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George  Buchanan: 


3    1924  028   151    094        .„„ 


GEORGE  BUCHANAN 

A  Memorial. 


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Library 


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FROM  A   CONTEMPORARY    PORTRAIT    PRESERVED    IN   THE    UNIVERSITY    OF  EDINBURGH 


7 


ttcl^anan: 


A  MEMORIAL 
1506-1906. 

Contributions  by  various  writers,  compiled  and  edited  by 

D.    A.   MILLAR 

(on  behalf  of  the  Executive  of  the  Students'  Representative  Council  of 
St.  Andrews  University). 


Faciei!  non  omnihus  xma 
Nee  diversa  tamen,  qiialem  decel  esse  smornan. — 


Ovid.  Kit.  U.  lU-lS 


ST.  ANDREWS: 
W.  C.  HENDERSON  &  SON,   UNIVERSITY  PRESS. 

LONDON : 
DAVID  NUTT,  AT  THE  SIGN  OF  THE  PHOENIX,  LONG  ACRE. 


Printed  by 
W.  C.  HENDERSON  &  SON, 

AT  THE 

University  Press,  St.  Andrews. 


y^ 


"-^in 


7 


TO 

JAMES    DONALDSON,   Esq.,   M.A.,  LL.D., 

VICE-CHANCELLOR   AND    PEINCIPAL, 

THIS   VOLUME    IS    DEDICATED 

BY   THE 

STUDENTS   OP   ST.  ANDREWS   UNIVERSITY, 

WITH    AFFECTIONATE    REGARD 

AND    IN    GRATEFUL    RECOGNITION    OF    HIS 

SYMPATHETIC    ZEAL    FOR    THEIR    INTERESTS. 


PREFACE. 

This  volume  is  the  result  of  the  request  specially  made  that 
there  should  be  some  permanent  memento  of  the  reverence  paid 
by  the  University  of  St.  Andrews  to  the  memory  of  one  of  her 
greatest  alumni.  It  was  considered  by  some  of  those  who 
inspired  the  Quater-Centenary  Celebrations  held  in  St.  Andrews 
in  July,  that  the  students  of  the  present  day  should  play  their 
part  in  acknowledging  the  greatness  of  him  who  was  imbued 
with  '  the  St.  Andrews  spirit '  and,  in  the  words  of  Gibbon, 
celebrated  with  elegance  the  unviolated  independence  of  his 
native  country.  It  was  further  suggested  that  their  acknow- 
ledgment be  made  in  the  form  of  a  Festschrift.  These  pages  then 
form  their  contribution,  which  is  oflEered  to  the  public  in  the 
year  when  the  Quater-Centenary  should  have  been  held.  Many 
difficulties  stood  in  the  way  of  anything  serviceable  being 
produced ;  now  that  these  have  been  overcome,  it  is  to  be  hoped 
that  the  work  involved  has  not  been  in  vain  or  valueless. 

After  such  a  work  as  that  of  Professor  Hume  Brown,  it 
seemed  at  first  impossible  to  say  anything  more  on  the  subject ; 
nevertheless  the  enthusiasm  shown  in  Scotland  by  the  Quater- 
Centenary  Celebrations  held  here  and  at  Glasgow  have  somewhat 
roused  the  bulk  of  the  Scottish  people  to  inquire  into  the  real 
work  and  genius  of  Buchanan.  Hitherto  his  name  and 
reputation  have  been  shrouded  in  the  native  mist,  and  the 
thrust  has  often  been  made — "  The  Scots  are  more  given  to 
boast  of  Buchanan's  name  than  to  read  his  writings."  The 
main  object  of  this  volume  has  been  to  enable  Scotsmen  to 
deflect  this,  and  to  give  them — what  has  hitherto  been  difficult  to 
obtain — an  insight  not  merely  into  Buchanan's  life  and  habits, 
but  into  the  times  in  which  he  lived  and  the  part  he  played  in 
the  light  of  Scottish  history  and  European  thought.  There  is 
also  given  a  taste,  if  but  a  taste,  of  Buchanan's  poetic  genius, 
and  it  is  hoped  that  Part  II.  of  the  volume  will  prove  of  interest 


viii.  Preface 

not  only  to  scholars,  but  to  all  who  were  prevented  by 
Buchanan's  Latinity  from  estimating  his  gifts. 

Some  of  the  translations  may  not  be  of  great  poetic  merit, 
while  there  may  be  some  unnecessary  repetition  of  translations. 
It  is  to  be  remembered,  however,  that  some  of  these  have  been 
made  by  students  in  their  few  odd  moments,  while  the  Steele 
Prize  Translations  were  generally  of  equal  merit.  Other 
translations,  however,  seem  of  great  value,  and  testify  to  much 
talent. 

Another  purpose  maintained  in  the  compilation  has  been  to 
penetrate  to  the  truth  about  Buchanan,  and  to  enable  readers 
to  estimate  his  real  position  in  the  Scotland  and  Europe  of  his 
age.  For  that  purpose,  various  distinguished  writers  kindly 
undertook  to  discuss  the  aspects  of  Buchanan's  life  and  work 
which  were  pointed  out  as  worthy  of  emphasis,  and  for  such 
kind  compliance  I  am  greatly  indebted.  There  may  at  times 
seem  incongruities  in  this  treatment,  but  it  is  to  be  remembered 
that  the  truth  was  only  sought.  Not  after  all  are  there  any  real 
collisions  of  opinion,  nor  has  it  been  denied  that  he  who  took 
all  Latin  for  liis  province,  who  made  fewer  mistakes  than 
modern  Latin  scholars  (although  great  emphasis  has  been  laid 
in  some  of  these  pages  on  the  very  few  he  did  make),  had  the 
learning  of  Erasmus  and  the  humour  of  Rabelais.  Though  in 
virtue  of  his  poetic  instinct  and  gift  of  verse  he  excelled  both, 
yet  with  these  and  other  Humanists  he  sought  to  substitute 
scholarship  for  scholasticism.  The  force  of  his  personality  was 
revealed  to  Scotsmen  in  his  advocacy  of  political  liberty,  and 
consequently  he  is  one  of  the  greatest  characters  in  the  national 
history.  All  these  points  and  more  have  been  brought  out  in 
the  following  pages.  There  are  one  or  two  other  aspects  which 
have  been  more  fully  dwelt  upon  than  in  other  biographies  of 
Buchanan.  It  was  my  intention  to  insert  a  chapter  on 
"  Buchanan  as  an  Educational  Reformer,"  but  Lord  Reay  has, 
in  the  Oration  which  was  printed  in  the  Appendix  to  this  volume, 
dwelt  at  length  upon  the  main  facts  of  Buchanan's  educational 
work.  Nevertheless  there  are  to  be  found  throughout  his 
writings  many  other  truths  and  hints  which  could  be  appreci- 
ated by  teachers  and  disciplinarians,  and  which  have  not  here 
been  set  forth. 

In  a  work  on  Buchanan  it  has  not  been  deemed  inappropriate 
that  some  of  the  contributions  should  be  written  in  French a 


Preface  ix. 

language  which  he  must  have  known  well.  The  chapters 
written  by  a  successor  of  Buchanan  at  Bordeaux — Professor  De 
la  Ville  de  Mirmont — formed  part  of  a  memoir  written  for  the 
benefit  of  the  two  or  three  thousand  members  of  the  "  Societe 
Philomathique  de  Bordeaux,"  and  afterwards  printed  in  the 
Eetnie  Philomathique,  1906.  Permission  was  readily  given  to 
me  by  Professor  De  la  Ville  de  Mirmont  to  abridge  this  memoi»- 
and  to  adapt  it  so  that  two  very  interesting  chapters  are  added 
to  this  volume.  To  the  learned  Professor  I  am  further  obliged 
for  his  aid  in  securing  the  two  photographs  of  old  Bordeaux. 

Some  new  biographical  matter  is  furnished  by  the  contribu- 
tion of  Senhor  G.  J.  C.  Henriques  of  Carnota,  whose  sympathy 
in  this  work  has  been  manifest.  His  researches  among  the 
Inquisition  records  have  proved  successful,  and  in  this  volume 
all  that  has  recently  been  discovered  is  set  forth.  Great 
assistance  in  this  matter  has  also  been  given  by  Rev.  R.  M. 
Lithgow  of  Lisbon.  In  securing  the  photographs  of  the 
Inquisition  papers,  Mr.  Lithgow's  services  were  invaluable,  and 
necessitated  months  of  correspondence  and  endless  trouble  in 
interviewing  Government  ofi&cials.  It  is,  however,  to  Lord 
Guthrie  that  I  am  mainly  indebted  for  the  use  of  these 
photographs,  as  it  was  only  his  enthusiasm  that  prompted  the 
securing  of  them.  Likewise  in  this  same  work  the  good  offices 
of  Sir  Maurice  de  Bunsen  and  H.  O.  Beaumont,  Esq.,  are 
recognised  as  of  value.  To  C.  L.  Chandler,  Esq.,  who 
discovered  the  excised  passages  in  the  copy  of  Buchanan's  Works 
in  the  Library  of  the  Royal  Palace  (see  Appendix  I.  c),  and  to 
M.  Bettencourt  who  allowed  Mr.  Lithgow  to  copy  them  out, 
there  is  due  much  gratitude. 

In  the  production  of  this  volume  I  stand  in  great  debt  to 
many.  Mr.  D.  Leslie  Hatten  of  Kingston  Hall,  Surrey,  has 
very  kindly  added  the  artistic  touches,  the  cover-designs 
especially  requiring  some  time.  Through  the  courtesy  of 
Messrs.  T.  C.  and  E.  C.  Jack,  Edinburgh,  I  have  been  able  to 
print  the  frontispiece  from  a  photogravure  plate  of  the  portrait 
which,  on  the  authority  of  Mr.  J.  L.  Caw  of  the  National 
Portrait  Gallery,  is  authentic.  To  Messrs.  Oliphant,  Anderson  <fe 
Perrier,  Edinburgh ;  Mr.  Henderson,  Maybole ;  Mr.  Middleton, 
Curator  of  the  Wallace  Monument ;  to  all  those  publishers  and  to 
Messrs.  Valentine  &  Sons,  Ltd.,  Dundee,  who  have  given 
the    use    of    portrait    blocks    and    permitted    me    to    use    their 


X. 


Preface 


photographs,  my  thanks  are  due.  Various  contributors  to 
the  volume  who  have  interested  themselves  in  the  work 
have  given  assistance  and  advice  which  have  lightened 
the  labour;  to  them  and  especially  to  Miss  L.  P.  Steele- 
Hutton,  M.A.,  London,  J.  Maitland  Anderson,  Esq.,  Librarian 
to  St  Andrews  University,  Mr.  A.  S.  Ferguson,  Univ.  Coll., 
Oxford,  and  J.  W.  Munro,  Esq.,  B.A.,  H.M.I.S.,  Dundee, 
my  best  gratitude  is  extended.  In  the  work  of  revising 
the  proof-sheets  valuable  help  has  been  rendered  by  Mr.  C. 
Guthrie  Cooper,  M.A.,  St.  Mary's  College,  St.  Andrews,  and 
Mr.  A.  Cassels,  M.A.,  Lincoln  College,  Oxford.  The  whole 
work  has,  however,  been  inspired  by  Dr.  Steele  of  Florence, 
whose  learning  and  enthusiasm  have  been  exhibited  in  his  zeal 
to  pay  homage  to  his  great  compatriot  and  Humanist,  George 
Buchanan,  while  our  respected  Rector — Dr.  Carnegie — has 
sympathised  with  this  work  of  his  constituents. 

The  nature  of  this  publication  has  led  to  some  variety  in 
method — some  contributors  demanding  their  own  methods  on 
the  subject  prescribed — but  an  endeavour  has  been  made  as  far 
as  possible  to  secure  uniformity.  In  Part  II.  and  Appendix  the 
introductions  and  footnotes  have  been  inserted,  so  that  the 
variants  in  the  text  of  Buchanan's  poems  may  be  seen,  and  his 
compositions  be  understood  in  a  clear  and  strong  light. 

Apart  from  its  being  a  souvenir  of  a  great  occasion  and  of 
a  memorable  scene  in  St.  Andrews,  this  volume  is  put  forth 
in  the  hope  that  Buchanan's  versatility  and  genius  may  be  more 
fully  recognised  than  hitherto.  He  is  placed  on  no  special 
platform, — his  disposition  and  temperament  prevent  that, — 
but  it  is  at  least  believed  that  his  fame  will  remain 
along  with  the  memory  of  the  Latin  language  and  the 
Scottish  nation.  This  work  will  serve  its  purpose  if  it  helps  in 
some  way  to  bring  all  Scotsmen  as  well  as  St.  Andrews  students 
to  realise  that  Buchanan  was  not  mainly  a  Latinist,  but  more- 
over a  poet,  a  wit,  a  statesman,  a  churchman,  an  educationist ; 
for  of  him  who  held  all  knowledge  in  reverence,  it  may  truly 
be  said  in  Chaucer's  words — 

"  And  gladlie  wolde  he  lerne  and  gladlie  toohe." 

D.  M. 

St.  Andrkws, 

February  1907. 


ERRATA. 

p.  xviii.,  Illustration  of  "  Ruins  of  Palais  Gallien,  Bordeaux,"  on 
p.  44,  not  p.  51. 

P.  1 9,  line  20,  read  paedagogia  for  paedogogia. 

P.  71,  line  18,  read  gadezim  for  dadezim. 


CONTENTS. 

Introductory. 

Ad  Georgium  Buchananum. 

by  J.  P.  Steelk,  B.  a.,  M.D.,  LL.D.,  Florence,  1 

PART  I. 

T.  Some  Notes  on  Buchanan's  Ancestry, 

by  Sir  Archibald  C.  Lawrie,  LL.D.,  Editor 
of  Early  Scottish  Charters,    ...  4 

II.  Early  Surroundings  and  Associations, 

by  Rev.  Robert  Munro,  B.D.,  F.S. A.Scot., 
F.E.S.E.,  Old  Kilpatriok,     ...  7 

III.  Buchanan's  Student-Days, 

by  William    Bayne,  Lecturer  in    English, 
University  of  St.  Andrews,  .  .  19 

IV.  Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought, 

by  Rev.  T.  M.  Lindsay,  D.B.,  Principal  of 
U.F.  College,  Glasgow,  .  .  .  25 

V.  Buchanan  1  Bordeaux, 

by  H.  de  la  Ville  de  Mirmont,  Professor 
of  Latin,  University  of  Bordoaux,    .  .  35 

VI.  Buchanan  and  the  Franciscans, 

by  Rev.   Professor  John  Herkless,  D.D., 
University  of  St.  Andrews,  .  .  53 

VII.  Buchanan  in  Portugal, 

by  Senhor  G.  J.  C.  Henriques,  Legal  Ad- 
viser to  British  Embassyj  Lisbon,     .  .  60 
VIII.  Buchanan  and  Mary, 

by  A.   H.    Millar,   F.S.A.Scot.,  author  of 

Mary,  Queen  of  Scots  :  Her  Life-Story,         .  79 


xii.  Contents 

IX.  Buchanan  and  Crossraguel  Abbey, 

by  Rev.  Kirkwood  Hewat,  M.A.,  F.S.A., 
Prestwick,     .....  86 

X.  Knox  and  Buchanan  :  A  Study  in  Methods, 
by   Rev.   ProfeKsor  H.   M.  B.   Reid,  D.D., 
University  of  Glasgow,  .  .  .  91 

XI.  Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher, 

by  James  MacKinnon,  M.  A.,  Ph.D.,  Lecturer 
in  Modern  History,  St.  Andrews  University, 
and  author  of  ^4  History  of  Modern  Liberty^  96 

XII.  Buchanan  as  a  Historian, 

by  J.  A.  Balfour,  P.R.Hist.S.,        .  .  105 

'    XIII.  Les  Tragedies  Reliqieuses  de  Buchanan, 

by  Professor  H.  de  la  Villb  de  Miemont,  115 

XIV.  Buchanan's   "Baptistes," — Was  it  Translated 
BY  Milton? 

by  William  Bayne,  .  .  130 

XV.  Buchanan's  "  Psalms  "  :  an  Eighteenth  Century 
Controversy, 

by  Rev.  Professor  Allan  Menzies,  D.D., 
University  of  St.  Andrews,  .  .  .  136 

XVI.  Buchanan's  Erotic  Verse, 

by  Rev.  R.  Menzies  Pergusson,  D.D.,  Logie,  143 

XVII.  Humanism     and     Science  :     Buchanan's     "  De 

Sphaera," 

by  J.  W.  Munro,  B.A.,  H.M.I.S.,    .  .  150 

XVIII.  The  Writings  op  Buchanan, 

by  J.  Maitland  Anderson,  Librarian  to 
University  of  St.  Andrews,  .  .  igg 

XfX    Buchanan's  Influence  on  his  Contrmporaries, 
by  Oliphant  Smeaton,  M.A.,  F.S.A.Scot., 
author  of  The  Medicii  and  the  Italian  Re- 
naissance and  English  Satires  and  Satirists,  186 
XX.  The  Humanist  :  A  Psychological  Study, 

by  Miss  L.  P.  Steele-Hutton,  MA.,  London 

School  of  Political  and   Economic  Science,  194 


Contents 


xiu. 


XXI.  Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar, 

by  Professor  W.  M.  Lindsay,  M.A.,  LL.D., 
University  of  St.  Andrews,  .  .  .  204 

XXII.  Buchanan  :  Wit  and  Humorist, 

by  William  Hakvey,  F.S. A.Scot.,  author 
of  Scottish  Chaphooh  Literature  and  Scottish 
Life  and  Character,  .  .  .  212 

XXIII.  The  Portraits  of  Buchanan, 

by  J.  Maitland  Anderson  .  .  225 

XXIV.  Buchanan  Memorials, 

by  the  Editor,  ....  235 

Epilogue. 

To  George  Buchanan,  by  Rev.  Archibald  Brov^n, 
Legerwood,  author  of  the  Sacred  Dramas  of 
Gewge  Buchanan,     ....  245 

PART  II. 

I.  Elegia  I.     Quam  misera  sit  conditio  docentium 

literas    humaniores    Lutetiae.  .  .  249 

Translation  by  T.  D.  Robb,  M.A.,  Paisley, 
author  of  Steele  Prize  Essay  on  Sixteenth 
Century  Humanism  as  illustrated  hy  the  Life 
and  Work  of  George  Buchanan,  .  .  253 

French   Translation   by   Joachim    Du   Bellay 

(1525-1560),  .  .  .  .  257 

II.  SoMNiUM,    ......  264 

How  Dunbar  was  desyred  to  be  ane  Frier 

of  which  the  Somniuin  is  a  free  Translation,  262 

Translation  of  Somnium  by  W.  MacFarlane, 

M.A.,  1799,  .  .  .  .  .  265 

III.  Ad  Juventutem  Burdegalensem,  .  .  266 

English  Translation  by  Richmond  S.  Charles, 

University  of  St.  Andrews,  .  .  .  268 

French  Translation  by  R.  de  la  Vaissiiiire 
DE  Lavergne,  University  of  Bordeaux, — 
{Steele  Prize),  ....  269 

IV.  Calendae  Maiab,  ....  270 

Translation  by  Lionel.  S.  Charles,  Uni- 
versity of  St.  Andrews, — (Steele  Prize — 1st 
Equal),  .....  272 


xiv.  Contents 

Translation  by  Victor  F.  Murray,  University 

of  St.  Andrews, — {Steele  Prize — 1st  Equal),  273 

V.  Desiderium  Lutbtiae,       ....  274 

Translation    by    A.   L.    Taylor,    M.A.,    High 

School,  Glasgow,       ....  276 

VI.  Adventus  in  Galliam,     .  .  .  .281 

French      Translation      by      Andrjiie      Waltz, 

University  of  Bordeaux, — [Steele  Prize),       .  282 

English    Translation    by   T.    D.    Robb,    M.A., 

Paisley,         ....  .283 

VII.  Ad  Inviotissimdm  Franciae   Regem    IIenricum 

II.,  Post  Victos  Caletes,        .  .  .  285 

French  Translation  by  Henri  Bonnevie, 
L.-is-L.,  University  of  Paris,  —  {Steele 
Prize— 1st  Equal),     ....  289 

English  Translation  by  Father  Prout,  (1866),  .  292 

French  Translation  by  Henri  Petitmangin, 
University  of  Paris,  —  {Steele  Prize — 1st 
Equal),  .....  1^95 

VI II.  Franoisci  Valesii  Et  Mariae  Stuartae,  Regum 

Franciae  et  Scotiab  Epithalamium,  .  299 

Translation    by   Lionel    S.    Charles, — {Steele 

Prize),  .....  307 

IX.  Joannis  Calvini  Epicedium,         .  .  .  316 

Translation    by    Lionel    S.    Charles, — {Steele 

Prize — 1st),  .  .  .  .  .  313 

Translation    by   Reginald    K.    Winter,    Uni- 
versity of  St.  Andrews, — {Steele  Prize — 2nd),  321 
X.  Gbnethliacon  Jacobi  Sexti  Regis  Scotorum  .  .  .  324 
Translation  by  John  Longmuir,  LL.D.,  Aber- 
deen, 1871,   ....  327 
XI.   Miscellaneous  Poems  and  Translatioiis. 

Hymnds  Matutinus  Ad  Christum,  .  .  333 

Translation    by   Rev.    A.    Gordon    Mitchell, 

D.D.,  Killearn,  ...  333 

In  Aulum,  ....  33^ 

Translation  reprinted  from  Xotes  and  Queries 

1850,  ■  ■  .  .  :  334 


Contents  xv. 

CoKNA  Gavini  Archiepiscopi  Glascuensis,         .  335 

Translation  by  T.  D.  Rodb,  M.A.,  Paisley,        .  336 

In  Doletum,          .....  337 
Translation    by   J.    O.    W.    H.    in    Notes   and 

Queries,  1850,            ....  337 
JoANNi    Areskino,   CoMiTi   Marriae,    Scotorum 

Proeeqi,            ....  337 

Translation  by  Rev.  Dr.  A.  Gordon  Mitchell,  337 

Ad  Alisam  e  Morbo  Pallidam  et  Macilentam   .  338 
Translation  by  T.  D.  in  Blackwood's  Magazine, 

1822,              .....  339 

Patricio  Buchanano  pratri,        .             .             .  341 

Translation  by  Rev.  Dr.  Gordon  Mitchell,      .  341 

Petro  Plancio  Parisiensi,            .             .             .  341 
French      Translation     by     Henri     Bonnevie, 
L.-]fis-L.,  University  of  Paris — {Steele  Prize — 

1st  Prize),     .....  342 
English    Translation    by    W.    H.    Hamilton, 

University  of  St.  Andrews,  .             .             .  344 
French   Translation    by    Henri    Petitmangin, 
University     of     Paris, — {Steele     Prize — 1st 
Equal),          .....  345 
In  Castitatem,      .....  346 
Translation  by  Rev.  Dr.  Gordon  Mitchell,      .  346 
De  Equo  Elogium,           ....  347 
Translation    by    J.    Longmuir,    LL.D.,    Aber- 
deen, 1871,   .....  347 
Hymnus  in  Cheisti  Ascensionem,            .             .  348 
Translation  by  Rev.  Dr.  Gordon  Mitchell,      .  349 
XII.  Selections  prom  the  "  Baptistes,"  with  Transla- 
tions by  Lionel  S.  Gha/rles — (Steele  Prize), 
Scene   III. — Queen    Herodias    incites   Herod    to 

slay  John,      .....  352 

Translation,        .             .             .             .             .  352 

Scene  V. — The  Appeal  of  the  Chorus  to  Heaven,  353 

Translation,        .             .             .             .             .  354 

Scene  X. — John's  Speech  and   Reply  of  Chorus,  356 

Translation,        .....  357 


xvi.  Contents. 

Scene  XIII. — The  Chorus  on  God's  judgment  of 

the  wicked,   .....  358 

Translation,        .....  359 

Scene  XIV. — Messenger's  Speech  and  Chorus        .  360 

Translation,         .  .  .  .  .  361 

XIII.  Paraphrase  op  the  Psalms  : — 

Psalm  cxxxvil, 

(1)  by  George  Buchanan,  .  .  365 

Translation    into   English    Verse  by 

John  Eadie,  1836,  .  .  366 

(2)  by     Lord     Grenville     in     Anthologia 

Oxoniensis,   1846, — (verses  i.-vi.),       .  368 

Psalm  cxxi., 

(1)  by  George  Buchanan,  .  .  .  368 

Translation  by  John  Eadie,  .  .  369 

(2)  by  M.  Antonio  Flaminio,   1559,  .  370 
Psalm  civ.  (xiii.-xxvii.), 

(1)  by  George  Buchanan,  .  .  .  371 

Translation  by  John  Eadie,  .  372 

(2)  by  George  Eglisham,  M.D.,   1618,       .  374 
Psalm  xxvii.  (ix.-xiv.), 

(1)  by  George  Buchanan,  .  .  .  375 

Translation  by  John  Eadie,  .  .  376 

(2)  by  Arthur  Johnston,  M.D.,  1637,      .  378 

APPENDIX. 

Appendix  I.  a.  Buchanan's    Defence   in    the   Lisbon 

Inquisition  as  written  by  himself, — 
Edited,  with  Notes,    .  .  .  381 

B.  Inventory  of  the  Books  of  Costa  and 
Buchanan  when  imprisoned  in  Por- 
tugal, ....  402 

C.  List  of  passages,  phrases,  and  single 
words  deleted  by  the  Inquisition  in 
Buchanan's   Rerum   Scoticarum  His 

toria, .....  403 

Appendix  II.  Statement  concerning  the  earliest  known 
translation  of  the  first  pai't  of  the  Be 
Jure  Regni,     ....  406 


Contents 


xvii. 


Appendix  III. 


Appendix  IV. 


Appendix  V. 


Appendix  VI. 


Appendix  VII. 
Appendix  VIII, 
Appendix  IX. 


Index, 


A.  List  of  Books  presented  by  Buchanan 

to  the  University  of  St.  Andrews,      .  407 

B.  List  of  Books  presented  to  the  Univer- 

sity of  Glasgow,  .  .  .  409 

"  Mr.  George  Buchanan's  opinion  anent 
the  Reformation  of  the  Vniversity  of 
St.  Andros,"— (from  a  MS.  in  the 
Advocates'  Library),  .  .  .  410 

Some  Notes  on  MSS.  Translations  of 
Buchanan's  Rerum  Scoticarum  His- 
toria,  .....  421 

Letter  from  Buchanan  to  Monsieur  de 
Sigongues,  Governor  of  Dieppe — (the 
only  instance  found  of  Buchanan's 
writings  in  French),  .  .  .  422 

Buchanan's  Testament  Dative,     .  .  423 

Buchanan's  Scottish  Residences,  .  424 

George  Buchanan  Quater-Centunary  Cele- 
brations, St.  Andrews,  6th  and  7th 
July  1906,     .  .  .  .  427 

(a)  Chapel  Service,         .  .  .  427 

(b)  Lord  Reay's  Oration,  .  .  428 

(c)  Graduation  Ceremonial,         .  .  453 
(dj   Quater-Centenary  Dinner,    .             .  462 

(e)  Buchanan  Exhibition  of  Books  and 

Portraits,  .  .  .484 

(f)  Garden  Party,  .  .  .485 

486 


LIST  OF  ILLUSTRATIONS. 


Photogra/oure  Frontispiece. 

Facing  page     8 

14 


George  Buchanan,    . 

The  Moss,  near  Killearn,     . 

George  Buchanan's  "  Ludging,"  Stirling, 

Old  College,  Glasgow, 

St.  Leonard's  College  in  1767, 

Gateway  of  St.  Eloi,  Bordeaux, 

Ruins  of  "  Palais  Gallien,"  Bordeaux, 

University  of  Coinibra, 

Facsimile,  Last  page  of  record  of  Buchanan's  Trial, 

„  First  page  of  Buchanan's  Defence, 

„  Last  page  of  Buchanan's  Defence, 

„         MS.  containing  the  Sentence  of  the  Inquisition, 

„         Intimation  of  Release,     . 
Convent  of  St.  Bento,  Lisbon  (Front  View). 

„  ,,  ,,       (Back  View), 

Mary,   Queen   of  Scots  (from  Engraving  in    Vol.   II.   of 

1722  Edition  of  Buchanan!  s  ^  History^ ), 
Ruins  of  Crossraguel  Abbey, 

John  Knox  (from  the  Bust  in  the  Wallace  Monument), 
James  I.  (from  Engraving  in   Vol.  I.  of  1722  edition  of 

Buchanan's  '  History '), 
Arthur  Johnston,  M.D., 
Andrew  Melville,     ..... 
George  Buchanan  (Facsimile  of  Woodcut  in  "  Les  Portrait. 

des  Hommes  lUustres,"  1673),  . 
Collection  of  Portraits  of  Buchanan, 
George  Buchanan  (from  Boissard), 
„  (from  Pourbus), . 


16 
24 
44 
51 
60 
69 
70 
71 
73 
74 
76 
76 

80 
86 
92 

104 
138 
191 

227 
229 
230 
232 


List  of  Illustrations 


XIX. 


George    Buchanan  (from   the   Painting   in   the   National 

Portrait  Gcdlery,  London), 
Buchanan  Monument  at  Killearn,   . 

Memorial  Window  in  Old  Greyfriars  Church,  Edinburgh, 
Monument  in  Greyfriars  Churchyard, 
George  Buchanan  (from  the  Bust  in  Wallace  Afonument), 
Gateway  of  St.  Salvator's  Chapel,  St.  Andrews, 
The  Right  Hon.  Lord  Reay,  G.G.S.I.,  LL.D, 
Principal  Donaldson,  M.A.,  LL.D 
J.  P.  Steele,  B.A.   M.D.,  LL.D.,  Florence, 
St.  Leonard's  Chapel  (Exterior), 
St.  Salvator's  Tower,  from  the  Quadrangle, 


234 
236 

238 
240 
242 
428 
452 
462 
474 
484 
485 


AD 

GEORGIUM   BUCHANANUM 

SCOTUM 
POETARUM   SUI   SAECULI  FACILE   PRINCIPEM 


SALVE,  Georgi !     Romuleas  ferunt' 
Olim  Severe  sub  duoe  copias, — 
Scotis  triumphatis  tuaque 

Heu  patria  bimari  subacta, — 

Munimen  illud  nobile  Termino 
Saorare,  et  artes  Indigenis  bonas 
Inferre  moresque,  ac  latentem 
Pectoribus  Genium  ciere, 

Cum  quo,  capaci  mentis  idoneao 
Ad  summa,  summos  gens  superat  tua, 
Princepsque  fis  cultus  Latini 
Discipulus  simul  et  magister. 

Quid  si,  Georgi,  stirpe  sato  tibi 
Leviniana  saecula  quattuor 

Longinqua  fluxerunt  ?     Per  ora 
Vivis  adhuo  hominum  venusta, 

1  Videsis  Buchanani  Rer.  Soot.  Hist.  IV  37-8  et  Silv.  IV  199. 
B 


Georgium  Buchananum 

Vivesque  semper,  donee  habebere 
Dis  carus  ipsis,  utpote  qui  pius 
Priscas  retractaria  salubri 
Arte  tua  ingenioque  Musas, 

Quae  to  fovendum  sic  vice  mutua 
Curant,  ut  adstes  aede  nova  sibi 
Gratus  sacerdos,  non  honorom 
Tempore  depositurus  ullo. 

Nee  te  secundat  Melpomene  magis 
Custode  Clio  praeteritae  rei, 

Per  quam,  redintegrans  tropaea 
Seotigenis  Patavina  nervis, 

Nostros  labores  militiae  et  domi 
Motusque  miros  eeu  tabula  refers 
Spirante  verum,  qua  fruetur 
Posteritas  animosque  paseet 

In  majus  auctos,  dum  manet  Arx  tui 
Britannoduni  se  speculo  videns 
Clotae  gubernatoris  undae 
Imbrifera  regione  natae. 

Sed  cur,  Georgi,  tot  tua  tantaque 
Inoepta  dicam  semper  ad  exitus 
Perduota  elaros,  cum  vel  ipsae 
Marte  gerunt  dubio  Camenae 

Certamen,  an  te  plus  decoret  stilus 
Magnum  tyrannis  iniciens  metum, 
An  grata  testudo,  an  supellex 
Qua  simul  Uraniae  propinquas 

Simplex  amator  ?     Nos  potius  juvat, 
Hac  luce  festa,  te  veteris  loqui 
Virtutis  auctorem  docusque 
Grande,  Calcdoniaequo  semper 

Pubi  colendum,  quippo  domabilom 
Nullis  Palati  laudibus  aut  minis 
Siciavo,  dum,  justi  Catonis 
Instar,  agis  sine  labe  vitam. 


Georgium  Buchananum 

Tu,  sive  potes  Sequanam  et  Orbili 

Fungare  duro  munere ;  seu  valens 

Praelector  ad  latum  Garumnaiu 

Vasconidas  renoves  Athenas ; 

Seu  Lusitanae  de  cathedra  Scholae 
Pulsus  maligno  crimine,  carceris 
Sub  nocte  prospectes  in  horas 
Supplicium  nece  pejus  ipsa ; 

Seu  propter  undas  Eridani  ducem 
Galium  sequaris  Palladaque  inferas 
In  castra  Mavortis,  remixtis 
Carminibus  lituo  strepenti ; 

Seu  missus  Aulae  nuntius  Anglicae, 
Regisve  doctor  sis  vigil  alite 
Nati  sinistra;   seu  Supremo 
Concilio  moderore  Cleri ; 

Tu  semper  idem,  nee  pede  devio 
Rectum  relinquens,  dotibus  uteris 
Sic  mentis  ut,  vultu  sereno, 
jEquus  eas  per  iniqua  rerum. 

Si  mordearis  dentibus  aulicas 
Partes  tuentum  spe  sine,  quid  tua 
Refert,  Georgi?    Te  minorem 
Dis  Patriis  geris  ;  hinc  resurgens 

Vili  tyranno  major  et  asseclis 
Quicumque  malunt  utile  quam  bonum, 
Securus  exspectas  ab  aevo 
In  melius  properante  laurum. 


J.  P.  S. 


I. 

Notes  on  Buchanan's  Ancestry. 

Biographers^  claim  for  Buchanan  descent  from  Sir  Walter 
Buchanan  of  that  Ilk  who,  they  say,  married  a  daughter  of 
Murdoch,  Duke  of  Albany,  by  his  wife  Isobel — the  co-heir  of  her 
father,  the  last  Earl  of  Lennox  of  the  old  creation.  To  this 
relationship  some  have  ascribed  the  historian's  approbation  of 
the  conduct  of  the  Regent  Lennox,  his  sympathy  with  Darnley, 
and  his  antagonism  to  the  rival  house  of  Hamilton.  The  claim, 
however,  to  the  royal  and  Lennox  descent  made  by  his  bio- 
graphers for  George  Buchanan  is  not  supported  by  anything  he 
himself  wrote,  and  is  erroneous. 

Murdoch,  Duke  of  Albany,  married  Isobel,  the  eldest  of  the 
three  daughters  of  Duncan,  Earl  of  Lennox.  The  Duke  and  his 
father-in-law,  the  Earl  of  Lennox,  were  suspected  by  James  I.  of 
treason,  and  were  executed  in  Stirling  in  1425.  The  widowed 
Duchess  died  about  thirty  years  later,  and  on  her  death,  the 
Lennox  was  partitioned  between  the  descendants  of  her  two 
sisters.  It  is  plain  from  the  record  of  the  partition  that 
the  Duchess  left  no  legitimate  grandchildren.  If  she  had  a 
daughter  who  had  been  married  to  Buchanan  of  that 
Ilk,  that  daughter  must  have  predeceased  her  mother 
without  issue.  Patrick,  the  son  and  heir  of  Sir  Walter 
Buchanan,  did  not  claim  to  be  one  of  the  co-heirs  of  the 
Earldom  of  Lennox ;  it  was  not  suggested  that  he  was  the 
grandson  of  the  Duchess  of  Albany.  It  is  therefore  right 
that  George  Buchanan  should  be  absolved  from  the  charge  of 
having  been  actuated  by  the  pride  and  prejudice  of  family  when 
he  fearlessly  and  honestly  took  the  side  of  the  Earl  of  Lennox 
and  exposed  the  crime  of  the  murderers  of  Darnley. 

In  the  middle  of  the  fifteenth  century  a  Thomas  Buchanan — 
a    brother    of    Patrick    Buchanan    of    that    Ilk,    who    was    the 

'  Buchanan  of  Auohmar  in  hi.q  E/imy,  Guthrie  Smith  in  S/mthrndrick;  and 
Hume  Brown  in  his  Biography  of  Buchanan. 


Notes  on  Buchanan's  Ancestry  5 

grandson  of  Sir  Walter — bought  a  considerable  number  of 
estates  in  Stirlingshire  and  Perthshire.  Guthrie  Smith  says/ 
'  a  charter  in  his  favour,  granted  by  Patrick  Buchanan  of  that 
ilk  of  the  lands  of  Gartincaber  ....  is  dated  at  Buchanan 
1461.'  He  had  also  a  charter  dated  at  Torphichen,  3rd  Feby., 
1461-62,  of  the  Temple  Lands  of  Letter.  On  the  2nd  October, 
1472  .  .  .  the  bailie  of  Halden  of  Gleneagles  gave  sasine  to 
'  Thomas  Buchanan  and  Robert  Makcalpyn  of  the  lands  of 
Ballvol  and  Camquhele.'  In  1476  he  purchased  from  Haldane  of 
Gleneagles  the  lands  of  '  Kepdory,  Carbeth,  Bailawoul,'  etc.  In 
1482  he  conveyed  Carbeth  to  his  son  Thomas,  '  Ballyvow  '  to  his 
son  Walter,  and  Kepdory  to  Robert — his  eldest  son  and  heir  ap- 
parent. In  1477  he  acquired  the  Temple  lands  of  Ballikinrain, 
in  1484  he  had  a  charter  from  William,  Lord  Graham  of  Middle 
Ledlewan  (the  Moss).  Besides  these  lands  he  bought  Drum- 
ikil,  half  of  which  he  gave  to  his  son  Robert  in  1496.  These 
charters  and  others  prove  that  Thomas  Buchanan  was  a  success- 
ful money-making  man. 

Though  he  was  a  brother  of  the  Laird  of  Buchanan,  there  is 
some  reason  for  believing  that  he  was  illegitimate.  There  is  a 
Crown  charter  of  1463^  confirming  an  entail  of  the  lands  of 
Buchanan  on  Patrick  Buchanan  of  that  Ilk  and  on  Patrick's 
son,  Walter,  whom  failing,  on  the  Buchanan  of  Leny  and 
his  six  sons  in  succession,  failing  all  of  whom,  on  the  brother  of 
Buchanan  of  Leny.  Thomas  Buchanan  (though  the  brother  of 
Patrick,  the  laird  of  Buchanan)  is  not  mentioned.  If  legitimate, 
he  would  have  been  the  next  heir  after  Patrick's  issue,  but 
he  was  passed  over  in  favour  of  Buchanan  of  Leny, — a  cousin. 
The  inference  that  Thomas  was  illegitimate  is,  I  think,  irresist- 
ible. Robert  Buchanan,  to  whom  his  father  gave  Kepdory, 
half  of  Drumikil,  and  probably  Middle  Ledlewan,  was  ex- 
travagant and  insolvent.  His  son  Thomas  lived  at  the  Moss, 
married  Agnes  Heriot,  but  died  while  still  a  young  man,  leaving 
a  family  of  five  sons  and  three  daughters.  The  famous  George 
Buchanan  was  the  fifth  son.  He  says  he  was  born  about  the 
1st  of  February,  1506.  The  year  then  began  on  the  25th  March, 
and  the  1st  of  February,  1506,  corresponds  to  1st  February, 
1507.  Perhaps  the  quater-centenary  should  not  have  been 
held  until  next  year. 

1  Strathendrich,  p.  309.  ^  Reg.  Mag.  Sig.,  No.  761,  p.  162. 

3  Vita  Sua — "anno  salutis  Christianae  millesimo  quingentesimo  sexto, 
circa  Kalendaa  Februarias," 


6  Notes  on  Buchanan's  Ancestry 

Agnes  Horiot,  George  Buchanan's  mother,  is  said  by  all  his 
biographers — but  on  slight  authority — to  have  been  a  daughter 
of  Heriot  of  Trabroun,  East  Lothian,  and  so  related  to 
George  Heriot  who  is  well-known  as  the  founder  of  Heriot's 
Plospital  in  Edinburgh.  On  her  husband's  death  she  left  the 
Moss,  and  in  1513  she  took  a  lease  of  a  farm  in  Menteith  making 
all  her  boys  (including  George,  not  yet  eight  years  old)  joint 
tenants.  The  year  in  which  they  got  that  lease  in  Menteith  was 
the  fatal  year  of  Flodden,  when  most  of  the  great  men  of  the 
Lennox  fell.  Mathew,  Earl  of  Lennox,  William,  Earl  of 
Montrose,  Edmondstone  of  Duntreath,  one  of  the  Buchanans  of 
Leny,  Napier,  one  of  the  co-heirs  of  Lennox,  and  others  were 
killed,  and  a  new  generation,  who  had  not  known  George 
Buchanan's  father,  succeeded  to  their  titles  and  estates.  A  few 
years  afterwards  George  Buchanan  went  to  France.  Though  as 
"  Magister  Georgius  "  he  appears  in  1531  as  a  joint  tenant  with 
his  mother  and  brothers  of  the  Perthshire  farm,  his  connection 
with  the  Lennox  ceased  so  early  in  his  life  that  he  could 
impartially  estimate  the  worth  of  the  Earl  of  Lennox  and 
others  who  played  great  parts  in  the  history  which  Buchanan 
afterwards  wrote. 

It  may  seem  invidious  and  ungracious  to  say  that  there  is  no 
evidence  that  the  great  historian  was  descended  from  the  royal 
house  of  Stewart  and  the  old  Earls  of  Lennox,  and  still  more 
ungracious  to  throw  doubt  on  the  legitimacy  of  his  great-grand- 
father, but  George  Buchanan  would  have  disdained  to  be  credited 
with  a  false  pedigree,  and  it  is  right  to  try  to  be  accurate,  even 
in  such  matters. 

A.  C.  L. 


II. 

Early  Surroundings  and  Associations. 

George  Buchanan,  though  a  native  of  Lennox,  and  a  kins- 
man of  its  hereditary  lords,  spent  the  best  part  of  his  life  in 
other  lands.  It  was  in  France,  Portugal,  and  Italy,  that  he 
won  reputation  as  the  enlightened  champion  of  education,  and 
"the  first  poet  of  his  age."  With  the  exception  of  what  he 
owed  to  his  early  home,  to  his  schools,  and  to  the  University  of 
St.  Andrews,  where  he  took  the  degree  of  Bachelor,  his  own 
land,  with  its  Cardinal  and  Cordeliers,  did  not  greatly  help  him 
on  the  road  to  fame.  Buchanan  was  too  patriotic  either  to 
remember  the  bitternesses  of  the  past  or  to  forget  the  claims  of 
the  present.  He  finally  returned  to  Scotland  during  the  chaos 
of  the  Reforming  struggles ;  and,  for  the  last  twenty  years  of 
his  life,  devoted  himself  unweariedly  to  the  national  service.  In 
this  respect  he  presents  a  notable  contrast  to  some  other  Scottish 
scholars  of  the  time.  Wilson,  Alane,  Scrymger,  and,  possibly, 
TurnbuU  and  Holywood,  went  abroad,  disguised  their  names 
under  Latin  forms,  won  fortune  and  fame,  and  never  returned. 
The  public  services  which  Buchanan  rendered  to  his  country 
are  well  known ;  for  they  form  part  of  the  history  of  the  new  era 
which  he  and  others  helped  to  create.  Not  so  much,  however, 
can  be  said  of  his  private  and  personal  life  during  this  closing 
period  in  his  career.  He  had  no  biographer  among  his  contem- 
poraries. In  this,  it  seems,  Peter  Young  missed  his  chance  of 
immortality:  missed  it,  too,  with  his  eyes  open.  He  had  been 
urged  by  Sir  Thomas  Randolph,  who  may  have  been  a  former 
pupil  of  Buchanan,  to  write  a  life  of  the  celebrated  scholar, — 
"  beinge  a  thinge  so  common  unto  all  famous  Personnes,  and 
most  peculiar  to  the  best  learnid."'^     The  advice  was  not  taken; 

^  Letter  of  Thomaa  Bandolphe  to  the  right  worshipfuU  Maister  Peter 
Yonge,  1579.     Epistola  23,  Oeorgii  Buchanani  Opera,  vol.  1. 


8  Early  Surroundings  and  Associations 

and  much  in  the  public  and  private  life  of  Buchanan,  while  at 
Edinburgh,  St.  Andrews,  Stirling,  and  elsewhere,  has  gone  into 
the  void,  possibly  beyond  recovery. 

This  paper  is  chiefly  concerned  with  the  earlier  and  later  stages 
of  Buchanan's  connection  with  the  West  of  Scotland.  After 
four  hundred  years  facts  do  not  lie  about  like  leaves  in  autumn. 
Yet  one  or  two  references  have  been  found  which  are  certainly 
not  without  interest ;  and  may  ultimately  lead  to  a  solution  of 
some  of  the  disputed  points  in  the  personal  history  of  the  dis- 
tinguished Scottish  humanist  and  reformer. 

George  Buchanan's  birthplace  was  the  old  mansion-house  of 
the  Moss,  pleasantly  situated  on  the  Blane,  near  Killearn,  in 
Stirlingshire.  It  was  an  unpretentious  building,  thatched  with 
straw,  and  stood  somewhat  nearer  the  river  than  the  present 
modern  building.  Wodrow,  writing  in  1732,  describes  it  as  "a 
little  house,  still  remaining,  in  a  mossy  ground,  in  the  parish 
of  Killearn."'  A  table  and  chair,  made  from  the  oak  beams  of 
the  original  house,  are  all  that  now  remain  to  connect  us  directly 
with  the  venerable  dwelling  where  Buchanan  first  saw  the  light. 
The  lands  of  Moss,  then  called  Middle  Ledlewan,  came  into  the 
possession  of  the  family  through  the  grant  given,  in  1484,  by 
William,  Lord  Graham,  to  Thomas  Buchanan  of  Bultoune — the 
founder  of  the  Drumikil  branch — "  in  virtue  of  counsel,  assist- 
ance and  services  cheerfully  rendered  in  times  past."  A  condi- 
tion of  tenure  stipulated  that  "  the  said  Thomas  Buchanan,  his 
heirs  and  assignees  should,  if  asked,  pay  annually,  at  the  feast 
of  Pentecost,  to  Lord  Graham,  at  his  three  head  courts  of  the 
lands  of  Mugdock,  a  silver  penny,  in  the  name  of  blanch  farm." 

It  was  while  farming  Moss — a  40  shilling  land  of  old  extent, 
or  a  property  of  about  104  acres — that  Thomas  Buchanan,  eldest 
son  of  Robert,  the  second  of  Drumikil,  and  grandson  of  the 
above  mentioned  Thomas  of  Bultoune,  married  Agnes  Heriot. 
She  is  supposed  to  have  been  one  of  the  Heriots  of  Trabroun. 
William  Buchanan  of  Auchmar,  not  always  too  reliable,  was  the 
first  to  give  currency  to  the  view.''  It  is  known  that  James 
Heriot,  Canon  of  Ross,  and  Justiciar  of  Lothian  died  in  1522  ; 
the  year  in  which  George's  maternal  uucle  and  benefactor  died.^ 

1  Wodrow's  MS.  Life  of  Buehamui,  vol.  16. 
^  Cross  Buchanan  Writs. 
'  Historioal  and  Genealogical  Essay,  p.  70. 

*  Selections  from  the  Old  Records  regarding  the  Heriots  of  Trabroun,  by 
W.  G.  B.  ;  printed  at  Haddington,  1894,  for  private  circulation,  pp.  11-19. 


m 


a 


-5 


Early  Surroundings  and  Associations  9 

Auchmar  could  scarcely  have  been  aware  of  this  fact.  Yet,  as 
there  were  Heriots  in  the  West  as  well  as  in  the  East,  the 
Trabroun  descent  rests,  meantime,  on  a  somewhat  slight  basis. 
Better,  however,  than  any  Trabroun  lineage  is  the  reference 
by  her  son  George :  ' '  such  was  the  frugal  care  of  his 
mother,  Agnes  Heriot,  that  she  brought  up  her  five  boys  and 
three  girls  to  the  estate  of  manhood  and  womanhood,"^ — clearly 
a  shrewd,  capable  woman,  who  fought  bravely  the  battle 
against  adverse  circumstances.  Buchanan,  always  reticent,  and 
no  sentimentalist,  certainly  owed  more  to  her  than  is  expressed 
in  the  self-restrained,  if  appreciative,  words  that  have  immortal- 
ized her  name. 

Although  nothing  definite  is  known  regarding  the  daughters 
of  Thomas  Buchanan  and  Agnes  Heriot  the  genealogists  have 
tried  to  fill  in  the  lacunae  with  picturesque  details;  which  need 
not  here  be  mentioned.  One  of  them,  it  may  be  inferred, 
became  the  wife  of  a  certain  Mr.  Morison ;  for  it  is  known  that 
an  Alexander  Morison  published  an  edition  of  his  uncle's 
paraphrase  of  the  psalms.^  As  to  the  sons,  Robert  succeeded 
his  father  at  the  Moss  in  1513 ;  and,  three  years  later,  became, 
on  his  grandfather's  death,  laird  of  Drumikil.  Robert  died 
before  1525.^  He  is  said  to  have  been  succeeded  by  his  brother 
Thomas;  but  this  has  not  been  conclusively  established.  If,  for 
example,  Thomas  were  the  second  son,  it  is  curious  that  while 
his  name  does  not  appear  in  the  lease  of  the  lands  of  OfPeron  of 
Gartladdirnack,  in  Cardross  of  Menteith,  granted  in  1513,  to 
Agnes  Heriot  and  her  sons  Patrick,  Alexander  and  George,  it 
does  appear  in  the  renewal  of  the  lease  in  1531.  He  was  then, 
presumably,  laird  of  Drumikil ;  yet  his  name  comes  last  on  the 
list:  the  order  being,  Alexander,  Patrick,  Mr  George  and 
Thomas.'  Alexander,  better  known  as  of  Ibert,  apparently 
went  to  the  Moss  when  his  brother  Robert  died,  or  sometime 
later.  The  name  of  "  Alexander  Balquhannen  in  Mos  "  appears 
as  a  witness  to  a  deed  of  date  21st  October,   1553. '^      Patrick 

'  Vita  Sua. 

2  This  ed.  (1582-1610?)  not  known  in  Scotland,  or  to  the  British  Museum. 
Joa.  Scaliger  wrote  an  ode  in  its  praise,  Opuncula,  p.  287.     Paris  1610. 

3  Acta  Dom.  Cone,  vol.  XXXVI.,  fol.  91. 

■*  Erskine  of  Cardross  Charters.     An  abstract  of  the  deeds  relating  to 
Buchanan  is  given  in  Mr.  J.  Guthrie  Smith's  Utrathendrick. 
^  Protocolx  of  Glasgow,  vol.  I.,  protocol  166. 


10  Early  Surroundings  and  Associations 

became  a  scholar,    whoso  fame   would   have   been   considerable 
had  it  not  been  eclipsed  by  his  still  more  famous  brother  George. 

The  Moss  is  about  one  and  three-quarter  miles  south-west  of 
Killearn.  For  some  time,  up  till  the  age  of  seven,  Buchanan 
may  have  attended' the  village  school.  His  family,  "  never  too 
prosperous,  had,"  as  he  tells  us,  "  been  reduced  almost  to 
extremity  of  want  "  ;^  and  it  is  not  likely  that  he,  a  lad  of  five 
or  six,  should  be  sent  to  a  school  outside  the  parish.  Killearn, 
then  a  prebend  in  the  Chapter  of  Glasgow,  had  been  annexed, 
in  1506,  by  the  Archbishop  to  "  the  College  of  his  University." 
Patrick  Graham,  brother  of  the  Earl  of  Montrose,  was,  from 
1504,  rector  of  the  parish,  and  Canon  of  the  Metropolitan 
Church.  In  1513,  and  during  the  two  following  years,  he  was 
Rector  of  the  Glasgow  University.^  Though  the  parson  of 
Killearn  took  no  direct  part  in  teaching,  his  influence,  as  a  man 
of  culture  and  of  birth,  must  have  had  some  educative  effect  on 
the  school.  Yet,  whatever  the  efficiency  of  the  Killearn  school, 
it  could  have  done  little  for  Buchanan ;  for  we  know  that  hia 
family  left  the  Moss  for  Offeron  when  he  was  in  his  seventh 
year. 

Mr.  A.  F.  Hutchison,  M.A.,  late  Rector  of  the  Stirling  High 
School,  suggests  that  his  next  school  was  at  Stirling.^  The  old 
pre-Reformation  Grammar  School,  in  that  ancient  burgh,  was 
the  nearest,  of  any  consequence,  to  his  new  home  in  Menteith ; 
and  had,  at  that  time,  a  master  of  some  repute.  As  early  as 
1732,  though  Mr.  Hutchison  was  seemingly  unaware  of  the  fact, 
Wodrow  made  the  same  suggestion.  "  It  is  probable,"  he  wrote, 
"that  Buchanan  was  initiated  in  the  Latin  tongue  in  the 
Grammar  School  of  Stirling,  that  lying  near  the  place  where  he 
was  born ;  unless  his  uncle  Trabroun  carried  him  somewhere 
else."'  An  objection  that  is  fatal  to  this  view  is  the  fact  that 
Yule,  the  personal  friend  of  Buchanan,  and  a  former  master  of 
the  Stirling  Grammar  School,  makes  no  mention  of  George's 
name  in  connection  with  that  school,  even  when  enumerating 
some  of  the  celebrated  men  who  were  educated  there.-' 

1  Vila  Sim — "  familia  ante  tenuis  pouo  ad  oxtromam  iiiopiam  ost  redacta." 

'■^  Munimenta  Univeraitatin  OlangiicHit;,  vol.  3,  pp.  42,  ll'7-9  •  also 
Diocesan  Registers  of  Olasijow,  vol.  2,  p.  76,  etc. 

3  The  High  School  of  Stirling,  pp.  273-5. 

■'  Wodrow  MS.,  vol.  16. 

"  Ecphrasis  Paraphraaeos  Ocorgii  Buchauani,  Dedio.  Epist.  London 
1820.     The  oophrasle.  Yule  aays,  was  partly  sketched  by  Buohauan. 


Early  Surroundings  and  Associations  11 

If  Killearn  and  Cardross  of  Menteith  did  not  greatly  contri- 
bute to  Buchanan's  mental  culture,  they  did  much  for  him  in 
another  way ;  they  made  him  acquainted,  from  his  youth,  with 
the  Gaelic  tongue,  and  the  traditions  and  romance  of  the  High- 
lands. He  might  bewail  that  he  was  born  "  amidst  the  British 
mountains,  in  a  land  and  an  age  that  was  unlearned  " ;  but  even 
these  conditions  had  their  compensations.  He  was  drawing, 
unconsciously  it  may  be,  from  the  fine  hills  of  Perthshire  and 
the  west ;  from  the  exquisite  beauties  of  Loch  Lomond ;  and  the 
splendid  statuary  of  the  Firth  of  Clyde,  that  inspiration  which 
helped  to  build  up  the  future  poet  of  the  age.  From  the  people, 
too,  he  was  learning,  as  a  youth  can  only  learn,  their  ancient 
tongue,  and  its  wealth  of  old  world  and  imaginative  lore.  We 
know  from  the  History  that  he  spoke  Gaelic  when  a  child. ^  He 
was,  from  the  first,  bilingual ;  and  that,  in  itself,  implies  a  mental 
discipline  of  no  mean  order.  Even  after  he  knew,  and  could 
speak,  many  languages  he  did  not  forget  the  old  Celtic  speech 
and  the  light  it  can  throw  on  the  place  names  of  Europe.  His 
ethnological  and  philological  investigations,  in  the  first  two  books 
of  the  History,  are  still  interesting ;  not  only  as  showing  his 
native  insight  and  sagacity,  but  the  thoroughness  of  his 
acquaintance  with  the  language  and  customs  of  the  Celts.  His 
work  here  has,  in  great  part,  been  superseded ;  but,  at  the  time, 
and  for  long  after,  it  was  the  first  intelligent  attempt  in  that 
direction. 

The  ea,rly  home  surroundings  and  education  could  not  thus 
have  had  much  direct  significance  in  building  up  the  mental 
structure  and  equipment  of  George  Buchanan.  The  true  centre 
of  educational  influence  must  be  sought  for  elsewhere.  On  the 
somewhat  slender  authority  of  Mackenzie  it  has  been  asserted 
that  the  Dumbarton  Grammar  School  was  the  institution  where 
he  received  his  first  real  academic  training.^  The  records  of 
Dumbarton,  which  have  been  repeatedly  searched,  have  yielded 
not  the  slightest  reference.  No  doubt,  Buchanan's  knowledge 
of  the  rock,  and  especially  of  its  magnetic  properties,  does  seem 
to  indicate  that  intimate  acquaintance  that  is  associated  with 
the  intelligent  schoolboy.  But  it  is  not  safe  to  draw  conclusions 
from  such  evidence.     Buchanan  knew  about  many  things  that 

^  Rerum  Scoticarum  Historia,  1,  8. 

^  Livea  and  Gharacters  of  the  most  eminent  writers  of  the  Scots  Nation, 
vol.  3,  p.  156. 


12  Early  Surroundings  and  Associations 

few,  even  now,  know :  as,  for  instance,  the  wall  of  Severus  and 
the  marble  deposits  of  Sutherland.  All  that  one  is  justified  in 
inferring  from  special  lore  of  this  kind  is  the  accuracy  and  range 
of  Buchanan's  marvellous  knowledge.  Mackenzie  may  have  mis- 
taken Cardross,  near  Dumbarton,  for  Cardross,  in  Perthshire; 
and  may,  thus  unwittingly,  have  helped  to  perpetuate  an  error 
which  has  since  obtained  the  currency  of  a  fact. 

Principal  Robert  Baillie,  in  a  letter  written,  May  23,  1660, 
to  Professor  William  Douglas,  Aberdeen,  says  that  Buchanan 
was  educated  at  Glasgow:  "  George  Buchanan,  born  in  Strath- 
blane  (Killern),  seven  miles  from  Glasgow,  bred  in  our  Grammai 
School,  much  conversing  in  our  College,  the  chief  instrument  to 
purchase  our  rents  from  Queen  Mary  and  King  James."' 

These  statements  of  Baillie  are  of  first-rate  importance.  He 
was  born  at  Glasgow  twenty  years  after  Buchanan's  death,  and 
was  educated  at  the  City  Grammar  School,  and  the  University 
of  which  he  afterwards  became  professor  and  Principal.  As  a 
chronicler  of  the  time  he  is  observant  and  trustworthy.  It  is 
true  that  the  Moss  is  more  than  seven  miles  from  Glasgow. 
Wodrow,  writing  seventy-two  years  later,  gives  the  distance  as 
ten  miles.  In  those  days,  land  measurements,  even  in  charters, 
were  indicated  somewhat  loosely.  When,  however,  he  says  that 
Buchanan  was  "bred  in  our  Grammar  School"  he  stands  on 
different  ground.  He  is  giving  expression  to  what  was  then  a 
living  tradition  about  which  there  could  be  no  uncertainty. 
Andrew  Melville,  Yule,  and  others,  who  enjoyed  the  friendship 
of  Buchanan,  were  still  alive  when  Baillie  was  a  student  at 
Glasgow.  lie  may  have  got  his  information  from  them;  or  from 
sources  that  have  now  ceased  to  exist.  Nor  is  the  fact,  other- 
wise, unlikely.  Patrick  Graham,  the  parson  of  Killearu,  was  a 
Canon  of  the  Cathedral;  and,  from  1513  to  1516,  Rector  of  the 
University.  He  would  naturally  be  interested  in  the  clever  lad 
whom  he  knew  at  the  Moss ;  and  it  may,  possibly,  have  been 
through  his  influence  that  he  was  helped  to  study  at  the  chief 
educational  institution  in  the  West  of  Scotland. 

The  Glasgow  Grammar  School,  originally  situated  near  where 
the  buildings  of  the  Central  Fire  Brigade  now  are,  grew  up 
under  the  care  of  the  city  and  the  Cathedral.  After  the  14th 
century  it  is  frequently  mentioned ;  but  it  existed  long  anterior 

'  Lelte.n   and  JoKriia/x  of   Robert  Baillio,  A.M.,   1S41-2,  vol.   3,  p.  402 
This  letter  was  first  published  in  the  1830  edition  of  McUre's  History  of 
Qlaejow,  p.  363. 


Early  Surroundings  and  Associations  13 

to  that  date.  It  was,  according  to  the  custom  of  the  time,  under 
the  immediate  supervision  of  the  Chancellor  of  "the  Diocese.'  In 
early  youth,  King  James  IV.  was  created  a  Canon  of  Glasgow; 
and,  it  would  seem,  as  if  his  zeal  for  education  had  imparted 
itself  to  the  school.  The  famous  Act  of  1496,  passed  in  his 
reign,  ordained  "  that  all  barons  and  freeholders  that  are  of 
substance  put  their  eldest  sons  and  heirs  to  the  schules  fra  they 
be  six  or  nine  yeirs  of  age,  and  till  remaine  at  the  Grammar 
Schools,  quhill  they  be  competentlie  founded  and  have  perfite 
Latine."  Hallam  thinks  that  this  Act  must  have  been  inopera- 
tive because  it  was  too  vague  for  execution.^  On  a  point  like 
this,  Heeren  is,  perhaps,  a  more  reliable  guide  when  he  asserts 
that  "  the  need  of  public  instruction  and  the  betterment  of  the 
same  were  felt  earlier  and  more  keenly  in  Scotland  than  in 
England."'  No  one  claims  that,  during  Buchanan's  school 
days,  any  Scottish  scholar  wrote  or  spoke  perfect  Latin — such 
Latin,  for  example,  as  was  spoken  and  written  by  Bembo  or 
Sadoleto.  Yet  the  language  was  known,  taught,  and  written 
with  more  or  less  elegance.  In  the  best  schools  much  care  was 
bestowed  on  its  teaching.  The  teachers  spoke  in  Latin;  and  the 
scholars,  even  while  at  play,  were  compelled,  under  severe 
penalties,  to  make  use  of  that  tongue  as  the  medium  of  their 
thoughts.  French  was  also  taught  and  spoken ;  and,  in  some  of 
the  Scottish  schools,  pupils  had  the  option  of  speaking  either 
French  or  Latin  during  play  hours.* 

Unfortunately  no  records  known  to  me  give  the  scheme  of 
lessons  then  taught  at  the  Glasgow  City  School.  Thomas  Jack, 
who  was  favoured  with  the  friendship  of  Buchanan,  and  who 
afterwards  became  minister  of  Eastwood  and  of  Montgomery,  is 
one  of  the  most  noted  of  its  headmasters.  He  tells  of  a  visit  he 
paid  to  the  aged  scholar  in  the  hope  he  might  revise  the  MS.  of 
his  Onomasticon  Poeticum,  and  of  the  kindness  he  received, 
then,  as  on  former  occasions.  "  I  found  him,"  he  says,  "  in  the 
royal  palace  of  Stirling,  diligently  engaged  in  writing  his 
History  of  Scotland.  He  was  so  far  from  being  displeased  with 
my  interruption  that  he  cheerfully  took  my  work  into  his  hands, 
and  after  continuing  to  read  two  or  three  pages  of  it,  he  collected 

'  Murdmenta,  vol.  1,  p.  37 ;  Reg.  Episcop.  Olasg.,  pp.  490-1. 
^  Lit.  of  Europe  in  the  Middle  Ages,  vol.  1,  p.  27.3. 
'  Oeschichte  der  Kiinste  und  Wissenschaflen,  vol.  2,  p.  1.39. 
'^  McCrie's  notes  on  Lives  of  Knox  and  Melville,  Grant's  Burgh  Schools  of 
Scotland,  and  P.  Hume  Brown's  Buchanan, 


14  Early  Surroundings  and  Associations 

together  his  own  papers,  which  were  scattered  on  the  table  and 
said  that  he  would  desist  from  his  undertaking  till  he  had  done 
what  I  wished.  This  promise  he  accurately  performed;  and, 
within  a  few  days,  gave  me  a  paper  written  with  his  own  hand, 
and  containing  such  corrections  as  he  thought  necessary."  It 
may,  perhaps,  be  too  much  to  construe  this  incident  as  if  it  were 
an  act  of  homage  done  by  a  former  pupil  of  the  Grammar  School 
to  its  then  headmaster.  In  any  case,  it  is  a  proof  of  his  unfail- 
ing courtesy  and  kindness. 

In  Buchanan's  time  the  school  seems  to  have  been  in  a 
flourishing  condition.  One  of  its  masters,  then,  was  Matthew 
Raid,  M.A.  He  is  first  mentioned  in  1511,  among  the  incorpor- 
ati  of  the  University.  Incor'porat'us,  in  this  sense,  may  mean  a 
student  who  matriculates  for  the  first  time ;  or,  one  who,  having 
studied  elsewhere,  desires  to  continue  his  studies  at  the  College 
of  which  he  becomes  a  member.  Reid  was  evidently  appointed 
to  the  mastership  of  the  school  as  soon  as  he  took  the  higher 
degree ;  for,  in  1520,  he  was,  as  a  man  of  whose  discretion  and 
capabilities  the  faculty  had  some  experience,  elected  Treasurer 
of  the  University.  Two  years  later,  he  was  chosen  one  of  the 
deputies  of  the  Rector' — perhaps  the  first  time  this  honour  was 
conferred  on  a  schoolmaster. 

Buchanan  was  from  the  first  a  scholar.  It  was  his  early  apti- 
tude and  skill  in  the  Latin  tongue  which,  as  he  tells  us,  he 
"  learned  with  much  pains  in  boyhood,"  that  appealed  with  such 
good  results  to  his  uncle  and  benefactor.  At  fourteen,  when  he 
left  school,  he  must  have  known  much,  at  least  in  the  matter  of 
Latin,  that  Matthew  Reid  could  teach  him.  At  the  age  of  six- 
teen, Melanchthon  lectured  on  the  classical  authors  of  antiquity. 
At  fourteen,  Andrew  Melville,  fresh  from  the  Greek  School  at 
Montrose,  entered  the  College  of  St.  Mary,  in  the  University  of 
St.  Andrews,  and  astonished,  not  a  little,  the  professors  there 
by  using  the  Greek  text  in  his  study  of  Aristotle.  Buchanan, 
with  all  his  capacity  and  diligence,  was  no  prodigy  ;  yet,  we  can 
well  believe  that  when  he  started  for  the  University  of  Paris,  in 
1520,  he  knew  and  spoke  the  languages  of  old  Rome  and  fair 
Prance  as  well  as  any  who  had  ever  left  our  shores  for  that 
famous  seat  of  learning.  The  glory  of  being  the  first  thus  to  lay 
the  foundations  of  that  Latinity  in  which  he  afterwards  so 
greatly  excelled,  and  to  foster  in  him  the  real  love  of  knowledge, 
'  MunimKiUa,  vol.  2,  pp.  126,  139,  149. 


■iTn 


r.a»." '  <  J 


Early  Surroundings  and  Associations  15 

must,  perhaps,  be  assigned  to  the  Scottish  schoolmaster,  Matthew 
Reid,  whose  name  has  lain,  for  nearly  four  centuries,  hidden 
but  not  unhonoured,  in  the  annals  and  muniments  of  his  Alma 
Mater. 

The  "  parcel  of  good  books,"  which  Buchanan  presented  to  the 
College  Library  consisted  of  twenty  volumes,  all  written  in 
Greek :  possibly  it  was  a  compliment  to  his  friend  Andrew  Mel- 
ville, an  accomplished  Greek  scholar,  and  then  head  of  the  Glas- 
gow University.  The  books  still  exist,  with  the  exception  of  a 
volume  of  Plutarch's  works,  which  is  amissing.  They  were 
given  to  the  University,  in  1578 — the  year  of  the  '  Erectio 
Regia ' — "  ex  dono  viri  optimi  et  doctissimi  Georgii  Buchanani, 
regii  magistri."^  George's  name  does  not  appear  on  any  of  the 
volumes.  That  of  his  brother,  "  Patricius  Buchanan,"  is  neatly 
written  on  the  title  page  of  Strabo's  Geogra'pTiy.  Above  this 
signature  is  that  of  Jacobus  Goupylus,  presumably  a  former 
owner  of  the  book ;  for  the  name  is  slightly  scored  through  by 
the  same  pen  that  wrote  "  Patricius  Buchanan."  In  this  folio 
there  are  numerous  jottings,  which  consist,  chiefly,  of  a  kind  of 
index  of  the  names  occuring  in  the  text.  These  were  not  made 
by  Buchanan.  A  few  notes,  of  an  explanatory  kind,  as  at  pages 
344,  352,  are,  almost  certainly,  in  his  handwriting.  He  makes 
frequent  use  of  Strabo,  in  the  opening  chapters  of  the  History ; 
and  many  of  the  names  there  given,  on  the  authority  of  Strabo, 
are  underlined  in  the  body  of  the  original,  or  written  on  the 
margin.  Five  of  the  volumes:  the  works  of  Demosthenes,  the 
Argonautica  of  Apollonius,  the  C OTnmentary  on  Aristotle's 
Rhetoric,  and  volumes  two  and  three  of  the  Commentary  on  the 
Iliad  and  Odyssey  by  Eustathius:  have  no  notes  of  any  kind.  In 
Euclid  one  note  occurs;  but  it  is  not  in  Buchanan's  hand.  The 
remaining  volumes  contain  many  notes  in  different  types  of  cali- 
graphy.  Alexander  Tral  appends  his  name  to  one  in  Greek,  and 
there  is  another  in  shorthand.  Those  which  can  be  said  to  be  by 
Buchanan  are  few.  Annotations  in  volume  one  of  Eustathius' 
Commentary  are  certainly  in  his  handwriting  (v.  pp.  32, 
79,  80,  83,  123).     This  is  a  specimen  of  the  marginal  references : 

'KiroWiav  dictus  airo  tov  awoXeviv  tod9  ev  KaTo^y  KaK<i)(T€(uv. 

Plato's  works  have  many  titles  and  references,  such  as  "  anima 

^  Munimenta,  vol.    3,    p.    407.      Irving  gives  the  list  in  his  Memoirs  of 
Buclmnan,  pp.  393-4. 


16  Early  Surroundings  and  Associations 

pura,"  "  anima  contagio  corporis  infecta,"  "  philosophia  nihil 
melius  a  diis  data,"  "  oculorum  utilitas,"  "  origio  jusfciciae  "— 
which  appear  to  be  by  Buchanan.  Some  slight  corrections  of  the 
text,  different  readings  and  allusions  are  written  on  the  margin 
of  Stephanus  of  Byzantium,  Manuel  Moschopulus,  Aristophanes 
and  Basil.  They  are  of  the  same  general  type  as  those  referred 
to,  and  betray  the  hand  of  the  practised  scholar — a  feature 
which  is  not  so  apparent  in  the  insertions  by  other  writers.  An 
interesting,  if  modern,  entry,  in  fine,  clear  caligraphy — given  in 
Basil's  works,  at  page  5 — is  in  Greek  and  Hebrew. 

Of  the  sixteen  Greek  authors  whose  works  Buchanan  pre- 
sented to  the  Glasgow  University  five,  at  least,  are  familiarly 
referred  to  by  him  in  the  History.  The  inquiries  of  Plato,  in 
the  Cratylus,  as  to  the  origin  of  words,  are  criticised  in  a 
sentence;  Stephanus  of  Byzantium,  "Concerning  Towns  and 
Peoples";  and  Suidas,  "no  mean  grammarian  among  the 
Greeks,"  are  quoted  once ;  while  Strabo,  as  already  indicated,  is 
often  quoted.  Plutarch  is  mentioned  in  connection  with  the 
opinion  that  the  word  Cimbri  was  not  the  name  of  a  nation  but 
of  a  pursuit  or  employment,  because  robbers  were  so  designated 
by  the  Germans.  Here  the  reference  is  to  be  found  in  Plutarch's 
Marius,  and  suggests  the  inference  that  Buchanan  was 
acquainted  with  the  Lives  as  well  as  the  Moralia  of  that  enter- 
taining and  philosophic  writer.^  The  pseudo-Plutarch — "he 
who  wrote  the  small  treatise  on  rivers  " — is  also  referred  to 
in  the  History.^  In  a  letter,  written  by  Gifanius  to  Buchanan, 
mention  is  made  of  Lycophron — another  of  the  authors 
in  the  list  of  gifted  books — in  a  way  to  indicate  that 
the  Scottish  scholar  was  familiar  with  that  obscure  poet. 
It  is  also  noteworthy  that,  in  1578,  the  year  of  the  donation 
to  the  University,  Serranus  sent  to  Buchanan  a  copy  of  his 
fine  edition  of  Plato,  in  three  volumes.^  It  would  thus  seem 
that,  apart  from  his  translations  of  Medea,  and  Alcestis,  and 
epigrams  from  the  poets,  Buchanan's  knowledge  of  Greek 
literature  was  much  more  extensive  than  is  generally  supposed. 
What  Baillie  says  about  Buchanan's  relation  to  the  Glasgow 
College  is  also  deeply  interesting  as  suggesting  the  part  he  acted 

1  Missing  vol.  of  P\\\t.—(he  Lives— iownd.  since  above  in  print.  On  fly- 
leaf, in  Buohanan'.s  hand,  is  tho  motto :  "  Omnia  mea  niecum  porto."  This 
saying  of  Bias  is  recoi'ded  in  Ciooro's  Paradoxa,  I.  8. 

'■>  Ror.  Scot.  Hist.  1,3;  2,  31,  45,  .S3. 

■'  Kpistolao  4  and  19,  Ihiehitiiniii  Opi  ni,  vol.  1, 


< 


o 

H 

O 

o 

p 

O 


Early  Surroundings  and  Associations  17 

in  procuring  certain  grants  and  foundations  from  the  Crown  and 
the  Magistrates.  The  Reformation  threatened  the  extinction  of 
the  Western  University.  Its  revenues  were  unjustly  seized  or 
alienated.  New  professors  could  not  be  appointed  owing  to  the 
lack  of  funds.  The  College  buildings  were  in  an  unfinished 
state ;  so  that  the  institution  resembled  more  ' '  the  decay  of  a 
University  than  an  established  foundation."  This  disorganiza- 
tion and  impoverishment  must  have  grieved  the  soul  of  the 
enthusiastic  educationist.  It  has,  therefore,  not  unreasonably 
been  inferred  that  the  gift  of  Mary,  the  grant  by  the  Town 
Council  of  Glasgow  in  1572,  and  the  new  foundation,  known  as 
'  Erectio  Regia,'  were  obtained  mainly  through  his  influence.' 
We  know  that  Buchanan  was  in  the  Queen's  retinue,  during  her 
stay  at  Glasgow;  when,  on  the  13th  of  July,  1563,  she  granted 
to  the  University,  under  her  Privy  Seal,  certain  lands  and 
revenues  of  the  Preaching  Friars  of  the  city  for  the  support  of 
five  poor  scholars  during  the  time  of  their  education.  On  the 
very  day  of  the  Queen's  gift  Mr.  George  Buchanan,  "within  the 
house  of  James  Graham,  dwelling  in  Glasgow,  resigned  in  favour 
of  John  M'Lawchtlane  and  Katherine  Galbrayth,  spouses,  the 
half  of  the  lands  of  Auchintroige,  extending  to  a  two  merkland, 
of  old  extent,  with  the  pertinents,  lying  in  the  Earldom  of 
Levenax."^  The  M'Lauchlans  had  been,  for  centuries,  in  posses- 
sion of  Auchintroige — there  is  a  confirmation  of  one  of  their 
charters  in  1394 — and,  it  is  probable,  as  Mr.  Robert  Renwick, 
the  learned  editor  of  the  Protocols,  suggests,  that  Buchanan's 
interest  in  the  lands  may  have  been  of  the  nature  of  a  wadset  or 
mortgage. 

Buchanan's  connection  with  the  lands  of  Auchintroige  raises 
a  further  point  of  some  importance  in  the  same  relation.  The 
date  of  his  final  return  to  Scotland  has  not  been  definitely  ascer- 
tained. Strangely  enough  the  first  reference  to  him,  after  his 
return,  is  in  a  charter  granted,  at  Glasgow,  8th  Nov.  1561,  by 
William  Cunninghame  of  Craigends,  by  which  he  acquired  an 
annual  rent  of  20  merks  payable  out  of  the  lands  of  Yoker.  On 
the  following  day  John  Galbrayth  in  Balgair,  as  attorney  for, 
and  on  behalf  of  Magister  Georgius  Buchquhannen,  appeared  at 
Yoker,  and  took  sasine  on  behalf  of  his  principal.^       That  the 

'  P.  Hume  Brown's  George.  Buchanan,  pp.  242-3. 
^  Protocols  of  Olasyow,  vol.  3,  protocol  756. 
3  Ibid,  vol.  5,  prot.  1420. 
C 


18  Early  Surroundings  and  Associations 

famous  scholar  was  then  in  Scotland  is  certain.  He  may  have 
come  back  even  earlier ;  for  the  deed  of  assignation  by  which  he 
held  part  of  the  Auchintroige  lands,  whether  as  wadset  or 
otherwise,  has  not  yet  been  discovered.  The  Yoker  annual  rent 
which  may  have  been  held  in  security  for  a  temporary 
loan,  was  resigned,  on  the  10th  November  1563,  by 
William  Gilbrayth,  "acting  as  procurator  for  Mr.  George 
Buchquhannen . "  ^ 

That  Buchanan  was  thus  much  ' '  conversing  "  in  Glasgow 
and  the  western  shires  is  evident.  He  was,  above  all,  a  man  of 
public  spirit,  exerting  himself  in  every  kind  of  way  to  advance 
the  real  interests  of  the  nation.  Nor  is  there  lack  of  evidence 
as  to  his  personal  and  social  influence.  Contemporaries  like 
Queen  Mary :  of  scholarly  tastes  and  brilliant  conversational 
powers :  Julius  Caesar  Scaliger,  Hubert  Languet,  and  Sir 
James  Melville,  were  even  more  profoundly  impressed  by  the 
charm  of  his  manner  and  conversation  than  by  the  range  and 
depth  of  his  consummate  knowledge.  Self -revelation  was  not 
much  in  Buchanan's  line ;  although  he  does  occasionally  draw 
aside  the  veil.  A  fine,  if  curious,  epigram  on  the  Entertain- 
ment given  by  Gavin  Dunbar,  Archbishop  of  Glasgow,  is  as 
creditable  to  his  social  instincts  as  it  is  worthy  of  his  honoured 
and  learned  host.  In  the  West  of  Scotland,  at  least,  the 
influence  of  George  Buchanan,  in  public  and  private,  is  a 
pleasant  memory,  an  eternal  possession,  which  all  the  years, 
with  their  unslumbering  antagonisms,  can  neither  depreciate 
nor  take  away.  "  Est  primum  sapientis  ofEcium,  bene  sentire, 
ut  sibi  vivat ;  proximum,  bene  loqui,  ut  patriae  vivat." 

R.  M. 

1  Ibid.  vol.  3,  prot.  761. 


III. 

Buchanan's  Student  Days. 

The  natural  step  for  a  youth  from  the  banks  of  the  Blane,  where, 
according  to  a  poetical  eulogist,  Buchanan  early  conned  his 
"  metred  book,"  would  have  been  to  enrol  himself  as  a 
student  of  Glasgow  University.  But  Glasgow  University  during 
the  first  quarter  of  the  sixteenth  century  was  at  the  lowest  ebb 
of  its  fortunes ;  and  James  Heriot,  Buchanan's  uncle,  resolved 
to  send  him  to  the  University  of  Paris,  a  place  of  study  which 
was  attracting  some  of  the  ablest  Scottish  youth.  Indeed  ever 
since  a  Scots  College  had  been  founded  in  Paris  in  1325,  Scottish 
youths  regarded  attendance  at  Paris  University  as  an  essential 
means  of  attaining  intellectual  culture.  It  is  probable  that  he 
had  student  companions  on  the  journey ;  at  that  date  youths 
proceeding  to  Cambridge  University  from  the  remoter  districts 
of  England  went  in  a  body  under  the  care  of  a  "  f  etcher  " ; 
so  Prof.  Hume  Brown's  surmise  that  some  such  arrangement 
may  have  existed  in  Scotland  in  connection  with  France  is  quite 
reasonable. 

At  the  University  of  Paris,  where  Buchanan  entered  as  a 
student  in  1520,  the  students  were  mainly  resident  within  the 
colleges,  or  they  might  board  at  paedogogia  (better  known  as 
pensionnats) ;  those  who  were  less  wealthy  lived  in  private 
lodgings,  and  were  known  as  martinets.  In  all  likelihood 
Buchanan  was  a  non-resident  student,  and  it  is  thus  possible 
that  he  associated  with  the  German  Nation,  which  section  had 
been  well-equipped  with  schools  at  one  time  at  the  University. 

He  tells  us  himself  that  his  favourite  study  during  his  stay  at 
Paris  was  the  composition  of  Latin  verse.  "  Partly  of  his  own 
choice,"  he  says,  "and  partly  of  compulsion,  the  writing  of 
Latin  verse,  then  the  one  subject  prescribed  for  boys,  made  the 
chief   part   of   his   literary   studies."'      One   illustrious   teacher 

'  Vita  Sua. 


20  Buchanan's  Student  Days 

graced  the  French  University  about  this  time — Lefevre 
d'l^taples,  esteemed  especially  as  an  expositor  of  philosophy  and 
theology.  Buchanan  lauded  him  in  later  years  as  a  leader 
in  mental  enlightenment.  Breadth  and  intelligence  were 
the  outshining  characteristics  of  Lefevre's  teaching.  These 
qualities  of  so  admirable  a  teacher,  which  were  the  talk 
of  all  the  schools,  would  have  their  own  particular  effect 
upon  Buchanan,  whose  mind  was  inherently  receptive 
of  rational  opinion.  It  looks  somewhat  incongruous  that, 
after  experiencing  the  influence  of  so  progressive  a  thinker 
as  Lefevre,  he  should  have  been  attracted  to  St.  Andrews 
by  Major,  a  prominent  representative  of  the  decaying  scholas- 
ticism. But  so  it  was.  The  conclusion  is  fair  that  in  doing 
so  he  was  paying  a  concession  to  the  fashionable  cult  of  dialectic, 
an  art  in  which  Major  was  a  recognised  adept. 

John  Major,  although  a  schoolman,  also  to  incur  the  ridicule 
of  Buchanan  as  formerly  he  had  been  visited  with  the  satire  of 
Rabelais,  was  a  man  of  European  reputation  as  a  teacher  of 
logic.  As  a  regent  in  the  University  of  Paris,  he  had  enjoyed 
much  fame  among  the  learned.  Distinguished  pupils  award  him 
cordial  praise.  Louis  Coronel  speaks  of  him  as  one  "  whose 
learning  will  commend  him  not  only  to  posterity  but  to  eternity." 
Robert  Senalis  calls  him  "  that  incomparable  master  in  Arts 
and  Philosophy."  It  has  been  surmised  that  he  owed  his  trans- 
ference to  a  Scottish  chair  to  Gavin  Douglas,  who,  during  an 
official  visit  to  Paris,  prevailed  upon  him  to  accept  a  post  in  a 
Scottish  University.  It  was  to  the  University  of  Glasgow  that 
he  was  first  to  devote  his  ability.  In  1518,  Major  was  incorpor- 
ated principal  regent  of  the  College  and  Paedagogium  of  Glas- 
gow. The  promotion  of  James  Beaton  from  the  Western  see 
led  to  Major's  removal  to  the  University  of  St.  Andrews. 

It  is  noteworthy  that  Patrick  Hamilton,  a  representative 
of  the  New  Learning,  was  incorporated  into  the  University 
on  the  same  day  (9th  June  1523)  as  Major,  a  repre- 
sentative of  the  old  learning.  Major  presided  over  the  Paeda- 
gogium, and  lectured  on  Logic  and  Theology,  his  favourite 
subjects.  A  special  theme  was  the  philosophy  of  Aristotle.  He 
is  admitted  to  have  discussed  with  vigour  the  important  argu- 
ments of  Aristotle's  philosophy ;  but  he  also  applied  himself 
with  zest  to  the  marvellously  futile  speculations  beloved  of  the 
schoolmen.     This  clement,  to  judge  from  Buchanan's  summary 


Buchanan's  Student  Days  21 

of  his  teaching,  unduly  predominated  in  his  prelections.  "  John 
Major,"  he  remarks,  "  at  that  time  taught  Dialectic,  or  rather 
Sophistic,  in  extreme  old  age  at  St.  Andrews."  And  his 
epigram  is  yet  more  scathing  :  — 

Cum  scateat  nugis  solo  cognomine  Major, 

Neo  sit  in  immense  pagina  sana  libro, 

Non  mirum,  titulis  quod  se  veracibus  ornat ; 

Nee  semper  mendax  fingere  Creta  solet.' 

When  he  proclaims  himself  thus  elearly 
As  "Major"  by  cognomen  merely, 
Since  trifles  through  the  book  abound, 
And  scarce  a  page  of  sense  is  found, 
Full  credit  stire  the  word  acquires, 
For  Cretans  are  not  always  liars  ! 

Major  is  said  to  have  been  one  of  those  who,  in  1539,  accused 
Buchanan  of  heresy  because  of  his  having  persuaded  James  V.  to 
break  the  Lenten  fast ;  and  this  may  have  increased  the  bitter- 
ness of  the  pupil's  scorn.  But,  despite  such  sarcasm,  Major's 
influence  upon  Buchanan  had,  it  appears  certain,  a  good  deal  of 
weight.  The  careful  marshalling  of  the  factors  of  discussion  in 
his  philosophical  treatise,  Dt  Jure  Regni  apitd  Scotos,  bears 
every  evidence  of  an  insight  derived  no  less  from  training  than 
from  original  discrimination.  And  doubtless  the  very  opinion 
embodied  in  this  powerful  political  pamphlet  had  a  stimulus 
from  Major,  to  whose  idea  of  a  state  its  pronouncement  has  an 
interesting  resemblance.  Major's  name  and  fame  became  more 
and  more  known;  and,  after  a  second  residence  at  Paris,  he 
returned  in  1529  to  St.  Andrews  as  Principal  of  St.  Salvator's 
College,  and  continued  in  that  charge  until  his  death. 
Buchanan  matriculated  as  a  student  at  St.  Andrews  at  the 
beginning  of  the  session  of  1525.^  His  name  on  the  register  of 
the  Paedagogium  is  written  beside  that  of  his  brother  Patrick. 
After  the  names  of  many  of  the  seventy-six  students  who  became 
Gives  Universitatis  at  this  date  is  written  the  word  -pauper, 
which  implies  that  they  were  unable  to  pay  the  usual  fee. 
Buchanan,  however,  was  not  now  reckoned  pauper,  because, 
according  to   Prof.    Hume   Brown,    he   paid   the   matriculation 

^  Epigrammata,  I. -41. 

^  Buchanan  states  in  Vita  Sna  that  after  having  been  two  years  in 
Paris  he  had,  on  account  of  ill-health  and  the  cessation  of  supplies  on  the 
death  of  his  uncle,  to  return  home — intra  biennium  avwiculo  mortuo,  et  ipse 
gravi  morho  correptus,  ac  undiqui  inopia^  circumveniuK,  redire  ad  suos  coactus. 
He  spent  a  year  of  convalescence,  probably  at  Cardrose. 


22  Buchanan's  Student  Days 

fee  of  sixpence.  It  seems  that  students  in  those  days,  more 
fortunate  than  their  successors,  paid  in  keeping  with  their 
means,  for  others  paid  eightpence. 

The  Paedagogium  stood  on  the  site  now  occupied  either  by  the 
University  Library  or  St.  Mary's  College,  and  was  only  erected 
after  some  trouble  had  been  occasioned  regarding  the  unsettled 
state  of  the  young  University.  The  first  building  which  formed 
the  nucleus  of  the  University  had  been  granted  in  1418  by  Robert 
of  Montrose  as  a  College  of  Theology  and  Arts,  and  was  dedicated 
to  St.  John.  Bishop  Wardlaw,  however,  gifted  another  tene- 
ment in  1430,  and  this  was  so  planned  that  the  system  should 
be  "residential."  Hitherto  hostels  had  been  opened;  but  the 
same  difficulties  arose  as  in  the  Paedagogia  at  Paris,  students 
breaking  the  laws  by  continually  removing  from  hostel  to  hostel, 
and  by  otherwise  indulging  in  conduct  which  would  now  be 
characterised  as  "  unworthy  of  a  student  and  a  gentleman." 
The  tenement  which  Bishop  Wardlaw  gave  was  to  be  a  common 
hall  or  paedagogium,  but  did  not  quite  correspond  to  the  institu- 
tion of  this  name  in  which  Buchanan  studied  at  Paris.  There- 
after peace  may  have  been  within  the  walls  of  learning  at  St. 
Andrews ;  but  this  could  merely  have  lasted  until  St.  Salvator's 
College  was  founded  in  1450,  for  the  study  of  Theology  and  Arts. 
The  Arts  students  and  masters  in  the  Paedagogium  considered 
the  new  college  as  a  rival ;  and  the  struggle  between  them  to 
attract  students  was  for  some  time  keen.  But  ere  long 
the  fame  of  the  older  institution  diminished,  and  it  was  finally 
superseded,  when,  in  1537,  Cardinal  David  Beaton  and  Arch- 
bishop Hamilton  completed  the  work  of  Cardinal  James  Beaton 
by  raising  on  the  site  of  the  Paedagogium  a  new  college  under 
the  title  of  "  The  Blessed  Mary  of  the  Assumption."  Thus  in 
Buchanan's  time  the  Paedagogium  must  have  been  in  a  poor  and 
languishing  condition — it  certainly  was  not  at  its  best —  and  it 
would  have  been  more  fitting  to  associate  Buchanan  with  the 
new  college  of  St.  Leonard's,  which  was  founded  in  1512,  and 
which  was  more  in  sympathy  with  the  New  Learning. 

Buchanan's  student  days  at  St.  Andrews  were  not  many.  In 
October  1525  he  graduated  with  what  might  be  called 
"  Second  Class  Honours,"  his  distaste  for  Major's  logic  no 
doubt  affecting  his  oxaiiiinatiou  results.  Nevertheless,  along 
with  most  of  his  fellow-graduates,  ho  escaped  the  payment  of  the 
registration  fee.     This  evasion  was  not  to  go  unnoticed,  for  the 


Buchanan's  Student  Days  23 

word  pauper  was  placed  opposite  the  names  of  these  struggling 
graduates. 

Soon  Buchanan  was  to  return  to  France  to  continue  his  studies. 
He  followed  thither  his  former  teacher,  Major,  and  sought  as 
that  scholar  had  once  done  to  take  his  final  degree  to  qualify  for  a 
professional  certificate.  So  far,  by  taking  his  Bachelor's  degree, 
he  had  completed  only  a  part  of  his  training  in  order  to  become 
a  Regent.  He  required  to  take  the  Master's  degree  before  such 
an  appointment  could  be  secured,  and  with  this  object  in  view 
he  would  doubtless  never  have  broken  his  course  of  study  at 
Paris,  had  not  indifferent  health  and  ultimately  Major's 
European  fame  attracted  him  to  St.  Andrews  in  order  to  study 
the  subject  of  Logic — then  alone  necessary  to  him  for  the 
Bachelor's  degree.  Under  the  existing  conditions  this  was 
possible,  for  the  studies  and  the  degrees  of  the  University  were 
recognised  by  all  other  universities. 

At  the  Scots  College,  Paris,  Buchanan  renewed  his  academic 
studies  in  France.  He  owed  his  nomination  as  a  bursar  to  Major 
— a  circumstance  which  has  sometimes  been  pointed  to  as  hardly 
appreciated  by  Buchanan,  if  his  severe  criticisms  of  his  teacher 
are  rightly  to  be  weighed  against  it.  The  two  facts  are,  at  least, 
not  inconsistent.  Although  as  a  bursar  he  would  receive  his 
board  and  education  free,  he  tells  us  that  the  first  two  years  of 
his  life  were  passed  in  "  hard  struggle  with  untoward  fortune."' 
Very  obviously  he  shared  the  somewhat  unpleasant  lot  of  the 
majority  of  the  students  at  the  Paris  Colleges.  The  accommoda- 
tion was  small  and  ill-provided ;  the  food  meagre  and  not  of  the 
best  description.  To  add  to  the  troubles  of  mere  living,  the 
amount  of  study  requisite  was  very  exacting.  Early  morning 
saw  the  students  at  work,  and,  after  the  mid-day  interval,  they 
were  equally  engrossed  throughout  the  afternoon.  Buchanan 
took  his  Master's  degree  in  March  1528,  and  was  thereupon 
appointed  a  Regent  in  one  of  the  most  successful  Paris  Colleges, 
that  of  St.  Barbe.  There,  during  a  residency  of  three  years,  he 
became,  as  he  was  to  be  to  the  last,  a  teacher  of  exceptional  power. 

A  pleasing  corollary  to  Buchanan's  career  as  a  student  at  St. 
Andrews  was  his  later  association  with  this  University.  Forty- 
one  years  after  his  studentship  he  was  appointed  Principal  of 
St.  Leonard's  College,  a  post  which  he  held  for  four  years. 
During  the  time  of  his  office  as  principal  Buchanan's  person- 

1  Vita  Sua. 


24  Buchanan's  Student  Days 

ality  stamped  itself  upon  the  history  of  St.  Andrews.  At  that 
period  his  own  character  was  of  significant  and  distinctive  note ; 
while  several  of  the  events  with  which  his  career  as  principal  is 
bound  up  were  of  very  great  interest.  Then  it  was  that  the 
Stephenses  published  at  Paris  two  new  editions  of  some  of  the 
best  of  his  verse;  the  one  including  his  Elegice,  Silvm,  and 
Ilendecasyllahi,  the  other  the  same  pieces,  with  the  addition  of 
the  Franciscanus;  and  still  greater  matters,  matters  of  national 
importance,  distinguished  his  official  life  at  St.  Andrews.  Then 
he  was  Moderator  of  the  General  Assembly.  Then  he  consulted 
at  York  as  a  fellow-commissioner  with  Moray  in  regard  to  the 
reception  which  Queen  Elizabeth  ought  to  give  to  Mary,  Queen 
of  Scots,  a  fugitive  from  Langside.  And,  above  all,  he  then 
wrote  his  Detectio  Maria:  Rtgince  Scotorum,  one  of  the  most 
notable  and  effective  indictments  ever  written  as  the  medium  of 
a  momentous  constitutional  charge.  The  St.  Andrews  Town 
and  University  records  are  singularly  destitute  of  references  to 
Buchanan.  Professor  Lee's  researches  into  these,  contributed 
to  the  second  edition  of  Irving's  Memoirs  of  Buchanan,  remain 
the  sole  authority  for  details  of  his  sojourn  in  the  city. 

It  is  not  hard  to  think  of  Buchanan,  both  as  a  student  and 
principal,  as  an  appreciative  inhabitant  of  St.  Andrews.  A 
willing  exile  in  France,  he  not  only  admired  and  sang  the  fair 
scenery  of  the  land  of  his  adoption,  but  also  its  excellent  learn- 
ing, especially  as  evinced  at  the  University  of  Paris.  Enthusiastic 
as  is  his  praise  of  the  smiling  meadow-lands  and  noble  rivers  of 
France,  their  attraction  perceptibly  fades  beside  the  glory  of  the 
halls  of  learning  at  Paris,  the  Lutetia  and  the  Amaryllis  of  his 
verse.  The  pastural  sweetness  of  hill  and  dale  round  St. 
Andrews,  the  flashing  estuary  of  the  Eden  at  full  tide,  the 
unrivalled  traceries  of  sunset  above  the  autumn-tinted  Fife  hills, 
were  not  indeed  perfect  amends  for  absence  from  "  Ligeris 
formosus,"  and  its  accompanying  splendours :  — 

Franoigenaa  inter  Ligeris  puloherriinus  anmis. 

But  they  might,  though  faintly,  be  reminiscent.  The  University 
of  St.  Andrews,  situated  brightly,  if  not  so  enchantingly  as  that 
of  the  Lutetia  of  his  "  fond  imagination  "  would  of  itself,  with 
its  conjoined  accomplishments  of  admirable  learning  and  earnest 
thinking,  writ  susiain  the  charm  which  France  had  had  for  him 
a  charm  hardly  equalled  by  that  of  his  own  land. 

W.  B. 


8  i 

m     -Is 

S  '^ 


IV. 

Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought. 

The  poor  little  backward  kingdom  of  Scotland,  a  century  or 
two  behind  central  and  southern  Europe  in  civilisation,  felt  the 
throb  of  a  three-fold  influence  during  the  sixteenth  century, 
and  the  impulsion  came  naturally  from  France.  For  the  small 
northern  land  had  been  for  centuries  a  satellite  of  its  great 
neighbour  beyond  the  sea.  The  French  alliance  had  been  the 
most  stable  element  in  its  shifting  political  life ;  the  Scottish 
body-guard  of  the  kings  of  France  had  attracted  the  younger 
sons  of  the  turbulent  Scottish  barons  for  generations ;  and  to 
reach  the  University  of  Paris,  to  settle  there  as  a  student, 
whether  as  an  inmate  of  the  Scots'  College  or  as  a  lodger  in 
an  obscure  roonj  in  the  Rue  d'  Mcnsse,  was  the  ambition  of  every 
young  Scot  of  pregnant  parts  who  longed  to  live  a  scholar's  life. 

France  of  the  sixteenth  century  was  seething  with  new  ideas. 

There  was  a  movement  for  the  reformation  of  the  Church 
and  of  the  religious  life,  which  passed  through  three  stages. 
The  first  has  been  called  le  protestuntisme  fabrisien,  and  began 
with  the  publication,  in  1512,  of  notes  on  the  Pauline  Epistles 
by  Jacques  Lefevre  d'Etaples  (Faber  Stapulensis)  and  received 
a  great  impulse  from  the  same  author's  translation  of  the 
Scriptures  into  French — the  New  Testament  in  1523  and  the 
whole  Bible  in  1525.  It  is  inseparably  associated  with 
Marguerite  d'Angouleme,  Bri9onnet  and  with  the  "  group 
of  Meaux."  Marguerite,  writing  to  Briyonnet  in  1521, 
could  say  that  her  brother  and  mother  (Francis  I.  and  Louise 
of  Savoy)  were  keenly  interested  in  the  spread  of  the  knowledge 
of  the  Holy  Scriptures  and  in  the  hope  of  a  reformation  of  the 
Church.'  The  second  was  caused  by  the  diffusion  of  Luther's 
writings  throughout  France.     As  early  as  May   1519  we  read 

1  Herminjard,  Correspondance  des  R^formateurs  dans  les  pays  de  langue 
fran9aise,  i.,  78,  84. 


26  Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought 

of  the  eagerness  with  which  Luther's  books  were  welcomed  there 
by  all  scholars,  "  even  the  least  enlightened,"  and  on  to  1537 
the  common  name  for  all  advanced  reformers  in  France  was 
Lutherans.^  The  third  began  in  1537,  when  the  whole  of  the 
French  Protestants  rallied  round  the  young  Calvin  and 
accepted  his  Institutio  (1536)  as  a  manifesto,  which  was  for 
them  a  scheme  of  doctrine,  a  code  of  morals,  and  a  mode  of 
worship. 

The  invasion  of  Italy  by  Charles  VIII.  (1494-5)  dates  the 
beginning  of  the  second  infusion  of  new  ideas.  Italy  conquered 
its  invaders  and  held  them  captive  by  a  thousand  dainty  spells. 
The  French  troops  returned  to  their  own  land  laden  with  books, 
pictures,  objects  of  art  of  all  kinds.  Charles  brought  with  him 
to  Paris  Italian  scholars,  artists,  architects,  artificers,  men 
skilled  in  perfumery,  even  tailors.  The  French  Renaissance 
came  to  maturity  almost  at  a  leap.  From  the  first  it  inspired 
men  and  women  alike.  Anne  of  Brittany,  the  queen  of  Louis 
XII.,  was  a  constant  patron  of  artists  and  men  of  letters  and 
strove  to  cultivate  herself  in  order  to  be  able  to  understand 
sympathetically  their  work.  Marguerite  d'Angouleme,  in  her 
own  person,  carried  this  movement  of  the  end  of  the  15th 
century  into  the  16th,  and  set  the  fashion  for  the  learned  ladies 
who  came  after  her.  This  French  Renaissance  was  a  curious 
combination  of  old  French  artistic  feeling,  with  that  of  Italy 
and  the  revived  spirit  of  classical  antiquity.  It  developed  into 
something  quite  national,  which  France  has  never  lost.  The 
leading  spirits  of  the  time,  men  and  women,  were  intoxicated 
with  a  new  sense  of  beauty  of  form  and  colour,  which  appeared 
not  only  in  painting,  architecture  and  gardening,  but  in 
household  decoration  and  even  in  dress.  The  movement  was 
naturally  aristocratic,  and  clung  to  the  royal  court  and  to  the 
courts  of  the  great  princes  scattered  over  France.  It  had  no 
sympathy  with  the  democratic  fervour  of  the  religious 
reformation. 

In  its  company  came  the  New  Learning,  producing  erudite 
Frenchmen.  From  the  first  it  bad  a  character  of  its  own. 
Its  inspiration  came  from  Germany  and  the  Low  Countries 
as  well  as  from  Italy ;  and  it  was  comparatively  free 
from  the  elegant  trifling  into  which  the  latter  Italian 
Humanism  had  degenerated.     If  some  date  the  beginnings  of 

i/6id,i.,47. 


Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought  27 

the  New  Learning  in  France  from  the  journey  of  Lefevre  to 
Florence,  Padua,  Rome  and  Venice  (1488-89),  it  must  be 
remembered  that  Erasmus  had  made  several  visits  to  Paris, 
that  Beatus  Rhenanus  had  expounded  the  political  writings  of 
Aristotle  there  in  1502,  and  that  scholars  from  Germany  and 
the  Low  Countries  had  taught  in  many  of  the  colleges  in  Paris. 
From  the  beginning  Frenchmen  put  the  New  Learning  to 
modern  uses.  They  applied  themselves  to  the  study  of  Roman 
jurisprudence  and  they  cultivated  the  art  of  writing  history. 
Of  course  almost  all  the  men  of  the  New  Learning  wrote  what 
were  called  Juvenilia — short  Latin  poems  after  the  fashion  of 
Horace,  Ovid,  Catullus,  etc.  But  these  were  acknowledged  to 
be  trifles,  of  value  only  in  practising  the  authors  in  their  use 
of  classical  latinity. 

All  three  influences  came  to  Scotland  from  France  during 
the  16th  century.  John  Knox  represents  for  us  the  first; 
Mary  Stuart  the  second ;  and  George  Buchanan  the  third.  All 
remain  with  us  as  part  of  our  national  heritage,  and  our  land 
would  be  much  poorer  than  it  is  to-day  had  it  failed  to  receive 
any  one  of  them. 

Buchanan  spent  a  great  part  of  hia  life  in  France.  He  was 
sent  there  in  1520 — a  boy  of  fourteen — and  did  not  finally  leave 
the  country  until  he  was  a  man  of  fifty-five.  It  is  scarcely 
likely  that  the  lad,  whose  time,  as  he  himself  informs  us,  was 
chiefly  occupied  in  constructing  Latin  verses,  and  who  no  doubt 
lived  in  some  obscure  garret,^  knew  much  about  the  intellectual 
movements  which  were  stirring  France ;  but  he  could  not  avoid 
hearing  the  cries  of  the  hawkers  who  went  through  all  the 
streets,  especially  in  the  students'  quarter,  selling  a  pamphlet 
entitled  Adversus  furiosum  Farisiensium  Theologastrurum 
decretwm  Philippi  Melanchthonis  pro  Luthero  Apologia.  This 
was  in  1521.  The  Elector  of  Saxony  had  asked  the  Sorbonne 
(the  Theological  Faculty  of  the  University  of  Paris)  to  give  him 
their  opinion  upon  the  theology  of  Luther.  Noel  Beda,  the 
strenuous  supporter  of  mediaeval  theology  and  the  bitter 
antagonist    of    the    New    Learning,    had    been    asked    by    his 

1  Rents  in  Paris  were  comparatively  very  high.  Jacques  Dryander  says 
that  he  had  to  pay  more  for  one  room — small  and  dirty — in  Paris  than  was 
needed  for  the  whole  expenses  of  a  student  who  lived  luxuriously  at  Louvain  : 
cf.  Illustrium  et  darorum  virorum  Epiatolae  .  .  .  acripiae  vel  a  Belgia  vel  ad 
Bdgas  (1617),  pp.  60-61. 


28  Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought 

colleagues  to  rejjort  on  the  request,  and  the  result  was  a 
furious  condemnation,  in  which  Luther  was  called  another 
Mahomet  and  in  which  it  was  declared  that  the  fire  and  sword 
were  the  only  arguments  to  be  used  against  him.  Melanchthon 
wrote  a  sarcastic  reply,  which  was  rapturously  received  in 
Paris.  The  Parlement  had  come  to  the  help  of  the  Sorbonne, 
and  had  interdicted  the  publication  and  sale  of  any  book  not 
authorised  (June  13th),  with  the  effect  of  greatly  stimulating 
the  sale  of  Melanchthon's  pamphlet:  impvne  enim  pro- 
damitari  libellum  Philippi  Melanchthonis  pro  Martina 
Luthero.^  The  most  incurious  lad  could  scarcely  avoid  hearing 
a  good  deal  about  Luther  and  Melanchthon  through  such  an 
incident  as  this. 

Buchanan's  two  years  in  Paris,  devoted,  as  he  tells  us,  to 
the  acquisition  of  facility  in  the  composition  of  Latin  verses, 
saw  the  beginning  of  the  training  which  made  him  one  of  the 
most  distinguished  Humanists  of  his  generation.  He  was 
distinctively  a  Humanist,  and  nothing  more.  For  we  must 
always  distinguish  between  the  Renaissance  and  Humanism. 
The  former  was  the  revival  of  the  ideas,  the  spirit  and  the 
decadence  of  Imperial  Rome ;  while  Humanism  was  the 
appreciation  of  the  precision  and  linguistic  delicacies  of  ancient 
classical  literature.  A  man  steeped  in  the  spirit  of  the 
Renaissance  did  not  need  to  be  a  Humanist.  Rabelais  was  not. 
Still  less  was  it  necessary  for  a  Humanist  to  surrender  himself 
to  the  Renaissance  movement.  Neither  Erasmus  nor  Buchanan 
did.  Plumanism  displayed  itself  in  the  care  to  imitate  the 
best  models  of  ancient  literary  excellence,  to  acquire  a  supreme 
command  over  the  art  of  literary  expression  as  that  was 
exhibited  in  the  great  classical  authors,  frequently  to  apply  to 
modern  uses  the  old  classical  modes  of  composition — epigram, 
ode,  letter,  etc.  The  genuine  Humanists  used  this  literary 
instrument  to  express  whatever  ideas  they  wished  to  share  with 
their  fellow  men.  Erasmus,  the  greatest  of  the  Hiimanists, 
put  the  ancient  vehicle  of  expression  to  thoroughly  modern 
uses.  He  employed  it  to  depict  all  sorts  and  conditions  of  men 
and  women — theologians,  jurists  and  philosophers,  monks  and 
parish  priests,  wives,  nuns  and  courtesans,  pilgrims  and  pardon- 
sellers,   peasants,   artizans   and   vagrants — and   his   vehicle   was 

'  Horminjard,  Oorrenpondance  dcs  Ri'foi-mateiirf,  tic,  i.,  70. 


Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought  29 

Latin  prose.  Buchanan  has  nothing  of  his  range,  keeps  more 
strictly  to  his  classical  models,  and  uses  Latin  verse.  But  both 
were  typical  Humanists. 

Humanism  created  a  literature  in  the  16th  century  which 
was  that  of  a  coterie  and  had  almost  nothing  national  about  it, 
powerful  within  its  own  limited  area,  but  of  small  effect  upon 
the  masses.  Buchanan  had  all  the  strength  and  the  limitations 
of  Humanism.  During  the  first  half -century  of  his  life  he  did 
not  belong  to  the  Renaissance  as  did  Rabelais ;  nor  to  the 
Reform  movement  as  did  Calvin ;  he  was  simply  a  Humanist, 
whose  love  for  antiquity  consisted  in  his  admiration  of  its 
literature,  or  rather  of  its  forms  of  literary  expression,  who 
could  belong  to  any  or  none  of  the  new  movements  which  were 
disturbing  the  time,  but  who  hated  to  loathing  the  bad  latinity 
and  the  endless  arguments  about  trifles  which  seemed  to  him 
to  be  the  sum  of  Scholastic  Theology. 

Leaving  France,  partly  from  ill-health  and  partly  from 
lack  of  means  to  support  himself,  he  spent  four  years  in 
Scotland.  Having  attended  with  little  profit  and  with  less 
enthusiasm  the  lectures  of  John  Major — one  of  the  most 
distinguished  of  the  later  scholastic  teachers — Buchanan  in 
1526  was  back  in  Paris  determined  to  be  a  scholar  and  a  man 
of  learning, — nothing  more.  He  graduated  probably  in  1528, 
and  his  appointment  soon  after  to  the  teaching  staff  of  Ste 
Barbe — one  of  the  most  liberal  colleges  attached  to  the 
University  of  Paris — proves  that  his  marked  abilities  had  been 
recognised  by  discerning  persons.  Having  become  procurator 
of  the  "  German  Nation,"'  he  was  chosen  in  the  following  year 
the  representative  of  his  Nation  in  the  election  of  the  Rector  of 
the  University. 

For  some  years  after  he  led  the  life  of  a  wandering 
tutor.      In    1542    or    1543    Buchanan    was    again    in    Paris, 

'  In  the  sixteenth  century  the  University  of  Paris  had  four  faculties — of 
Theology  (the  Sorbonne),  of  Medicine,  of  Law,  and  of  Arts.  The  students 
belonging  to  the  faculties  of  Law  and  Medicine  were  comparatively  few.  The 
first  three  faculties  were  ruled  by  Deans  ;  the  fourth,  the  faculty  of  Arts,  was 
divided  into  four  nations — the  nation  of  France  (students  from  the  Midi  and 
from  a  large  part  of  Europe),  the  nation  of  Germany  which  included  students 
from  England  and  Scotland,  the  nation  of  Normandy,  and  the  nation  of 
Picardy.  At  the  head  of  each  nation  was,  not  a  Dean,  but  a  Procurator  who 
was  appointed  for  one  month  only,  but  who  might  be  re-appointed.  Buchanan 
was  Procurator  four  successive  times. 


30  Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought 

a  regent,  Mr.  Hume  Brown  conjectures,  at  the  College 
du  Cardinal  Lemoine.  We  next  hear  of  him  accompanying 
Andre  de  Gouvea,  his  old  Principal  at  Bordeaux,  when  the 
great  Portuguese  Humanist,  at  the  command  of  John  III.  of 
Portugal,  organised  a  college  at  Coimbra  on  humanist 
principles.  The  new  college  started  with  fair  prospects,  which 
were  soon  clouded.  The  great  reactionary  Society  of  Jesus  had 
by  this  time  been  firmly  established  and  was  everywhere 
engaged  in  combating  not  only  the  Reformation,  but  all 
learning  which  was  not  avowedly  subservient  to  the  Roman 
See.  On  the  death  of  Gouvea,  the  Jesuits  gained  possession  of 
the  College.  Some  of  the  professors  were  seized  by  the 
Inquisition  and  endured  long  confinement,  among  them  being 
Buchanan.  It  was  during  his  long  confinement  that  he  made 
his  celebrated  translation  of  the  Psalms  into  Latin  verse. 
Soon  after  his  release  he  made  his  way  to  England,  then  to 
France.  He  may  have  become  regent  in  one  of  the  colleges  at 
Paris;    he  was  certainly  protected  by  influential  persons.' 

During  all  these  years  Buchanan's  fame  as  a  Humanist  was 
increasing.  From  the  first  his  power  of  writing  Latin  verse 
was  manifest.  His  biting  epigrams  on  obscurantist  teachers 
made  him  known,  feared  and  disliked.  As  the  years  passed  his 
fame  grew  steadily.  The  elder  Scaliger  declared  that  in  poetry 
Buchanan  left  all  Europe  behind.  The  learned  French 
printers,  Henri  and  Robert  Estienne,  said  that  he  was  the  first 
of  the  poets  of  the  age.  His  translation — transformation 
perhaps  it  should  be  called — of  the  Psalms  of  David  into  odes 
after  the  fashion  of  Horace  made  him  famous  in  every 
European  land. 

The  life  which  Buchanan  led  abroad,  wandering  from 
college  to  college,  varied  by  engagements  as  tutor  or  private 
secretary,  was  a  common  one  among  the  Humanists  of  the  16th 
century.  The  greater  educational  prizes  were  beyond  their 
reach  unless  they  succeeded  in  obtaining  an  ecclesiastical 
position   within   the   Roman   Catholic   Church — a   thing    which 

'  Marguorito  d'Angoul(5iiio  was  probably  one.  She  was  an  assidnoua  pro- 
tector both  of  Hunianista  antl  Roformora,  and  froquontly  cnrollod  learned  men 
among  her  '  valoiq-do-chambrc '  to  give  them  the  seourity  of  her  household: 
"  Ion  voyant  a  I'entour  de  oealo  bonne  dame,  lu  ons.aos  dit  d'ollc  qne  c'estoit  una 
ponllo,  qui  Hoignenaement  appello  ot  asaoniblo  ses  petite  pouleta  ot  couvre  de 
aes  ailea."     (Genin,  Lrf.lrcH  de  Marifuerite  d'  Angoulfmc,  p.  51.) 


Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought  31 

had  become  increasingly  difficult  after  1530,  when  that  Church 
had  awakened  to  the  danger  which  threatened  it  from  erudition 
and  free  enquiry.  In  France  it  was  perhaps  more  difficult 
than  elsewhere,  owing  to  the  influence  of  the  Sorbonne  and  the 
conservatism  of  the  Parlement  of  Paris,  which  was  always  ready 
to  support  the  decisions  of  the  great  theological  Faculty. 

The  Sorbonne,  during  the  greater  portion  of  Buchanan's 
life  in  France  was  practically  ruled  by  Noel  Beda.  This 
extraordinary  man,  of  no  great  intellectual  capacities,  who 
hated  everything  which  seemed  to  menace  mediaeval  theology, 
was  able  by  his  profound  conviction  that  he  was  in  the  right, 
by  his  determination,  by  his  unexampled  courage,  to  wage  a 
pitiless  war  against  both  the  New  Learning  and  every 
appearance  of  religious  reform.  Francis  I.,  partly  because  he 
liked  new  ideas,  partly  influenced  by  his  sister.  Marguerite 
d'Angouleme,  partly  because  he  had  a  grudge  against  the 
Sorbonne  for  its  action  in  the  matter  of  the  concordat  of  1516, 
favoured  the  New  Learning  and  even  gave  his  protection  to 
such  advocates  of  a  religious  reform  as  Lefevre  and  his 
followers.  He  was  by  taste  and  training  a  man  of  the 
Renaissance ;  it  pleased  him  to  be  called  and  to  imagine  himself 
to  be  the  patron  of  men  of  letters.  At  the  same  time  he  felt 
galled  and  irritated  by  the  real  power  which  the  Sorbonne 
possessed  and  which  he  felt  to  be  an  infringement  on  his  kingly 
prerogative.  He  was  at  heart  an  anti-sorbonnist,  who  feared 
the  Sorbonne.  He  had  long  dreamed  of  a  GolUge  de  France, 
a  free  association  of  learned  men,  who  could  teach  the  New 
Learning  and  form  a  counterpoise  to  the  Sorbonne,  which 
dominated  the  University.  The  project  took  many  forms  and 
never  came  to  fruition  until  long  after  Francis'  time,  but  the 
very  thought  of  it  was  sufficient  to  irritate  the  Sorbonne  and 
determine  them  to  resist  all  such  innovations.  Noel  Beda, 
whose  whole  struggle  against  the  New  Learning  and  Reform, 
was  an  anticipation  of  the  later  League,  brought  all  the 
resources  of  fanaticism  to  bear  against  the  resolve  of  the  king. 
The  consequence  was  that  all  throughout  the  years  of 
Buchanan's  residence  in  France  there  was  an  embittered 
quarrel  between  the  Sorbonnists  and  the  students  who  sided 
with  the  New  Learning.  The  conservatives  made  little  or  no 
distinction  between  a  Humanist  and  a  Reformer,  between  a 
follower  of  Erasmus  and  a  disciple  of  Luther.      A  knowledge 


32  Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought 

of  Greek  was  a  mark  of  heresy;  to  discard  Alexander  de 
Villedieu's  Latin  Grammar  and  to  teach  from  Linacre's 
awakened  suspicion.  The  Sorbonnist  students  went  about 
singing : 

Prions  tous  le  Roi  de  Gloire 

Qu'il  confonde  ces  ohiena  mauldicts, 

Afin  qu'il  ii'en  soit  plus  mcmoire, 

Non  plus  quo  de  vielz  os  pourris. 

Au  feu,  au  feu  !  o'est  lour  rep^re  ! 

Fais-en  justice  !     Dieu  I'a  permys. 

The  others  replied  in  the  famous  song : 

La  Sainte  Ecriture  toute 
Purement  se  preschera, 
Et  toute  doctrine  sotte 
Des  hommes  on  oubliera. 

La  Sorbonne  la  bigotle, 

La  Sorbonne  se  taira. 

It  was  almost  inevitable  that  in  such  circumstances 
Humanists  like  Buchanan  and  reformers  who  were  the  disciples 
of  Luther,  or  who  had  been  taught  to  think  by  his  writings, 
should  be  drawn  together  although  the  former  had  not  adopted 
the  views  of  the  latter.  Humanists  naturally  associated  with 
those  whom  Buchanan  calls  "  Lutheran  sectaries,"  and  the 
intimacy  did  not  imply  that  they  had  embraced  the  cause  of  the 
reformation.  They  both  rejoiced  in  the  influence  which 
Marguerite  d'Angouleme  exercised  over  her  volatile  brother,  in 
the  almost  unvarying  confidence  which  Francis  had  in  the 
great  French  Humanist  Guillaume  Bude,  who,  though  never  a 
' '  royal  lecturer  "  himself,  was  nevertheless  mainly  instrumental 
in  securing  the  appointment  of  the  distinguished  scholars, 
"  liseurs  du  Roi  en  I'Universite  de  Paris" — Danes,  Toussain, 
Vatable,  Oronce  Fine,  and  others.  They  both  thought  of  the 
discomfiture  of  the  Sorbonne  when  they  read,  posted  on  the 
University  boards  by  royal  command,  such  intimations  as, 
"  To-morrow  at  7  o'clock,  Agathias  Guidacerius  will,  at  the 
College  de  Cambrai,  continue  his  lectures  on  the  Psalms  by 
commenting  on  Psalm  XX.";  or,  "P.  Danes,  royal  professor 
of  Greek,  will,  on  Monday  at  2  o'clock,  continue  his  commenting 
on  Aristotle."  They  jubilated  when  Beda,  after  his  daring 
attack  on  Marguerite's  book,  Jc  Mirtiir  de  I'dme  pecheresse,  was 
banished,  recalled,  and  prosecuted  for  frse-mnjeste ;  or  when 
the  I'arlement  of  Paris  refused  the  interdict  which  Beda  had 


Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought  33 

asked  to  prevent  Danes  and  Vatable  expounding  the  Holy 
Scriptures  within  the  University  without  having  first  received 
the  permission  of  the  Sorbonne.  Everything  combined  to  link 
together  Reformers  and  Humanists  in  the  days  of  Francis  I. 
The  Reformers  as-  well  as  the  Humanists  enjoyed  the  biting 
Latin'  epigrams  which  the  young  Scotch  regent  circulated 
attacking  the  Sorbonne,  its  teachers  and  its  antiquated  methods, 
whieb.  were  alone  supposed  to  be  orthodox.  There  is  no  need 
to  suppose  that  because  Buchanan  consorted  with  "  Lutheran 
sectaries;;"  that  he  had  adopted  the  tenets  of  the  Reformation, 
or  that  he  had  seriously  studied  the  principles  involved.  But 
from  the  year  1556  the  indifference  was  exchanged  for  an 
earnest  endeavour  to  know  the  truth  lying  in  the  contending 
claims  of  the  mediaeval  Church  and  the  Reformation. 
Buchanan  began  to  study  the  Scriptures  carefully.  He 
repeated  in  his  experience  what  many  a  distinguished  Humanist 
had  done  in  Germany  forty  years  earlier.  Eobanus  Hessus, 
crowned  poet-king,  had  abandoned  his  Horace  for  the 
Enchiridion  of  Erasmus  and  the  Holy  Scriptures ;  Jodocus 
Koch  of  Nordlingen  (Justus  Jonas)  had  forsaken  classical 
Greek  to  busy  himself  with  the  Epistles  to  the  Corinthians ; 
and  even  the  wicked  satirist  Curicius  Cordus  had  betaken 
himself  to  the  New  Testament.  So  Buchanan,  leaving  his 
latinity,  devoted  his  time  to  the  study  of  the  Holy  Scriptures 
"  that  he  might  be  able  to  arrive  at  a  more  definite  opinion  on 
the  controversies  which  were  then  distracting  the  greater  part 
of  mankind."  The  result  was  that  when  he  returned  finally  to 
Scotland  in  1561,  he  joined  the  Reformed  Church.  It  is 
interesting  to  note  that  no  period  was  more  dangerous  for 
"  those  of  the  religion"  (as  Protestants  were  called  in  France) 
than  the  years  when  Buchanan  slowly,  as  became  a  scholar, 
resolved  to  take  the  side  of  the  Reformation.  Protestantism 
in  France  was  no  longer  a  Christian  mysticism  supplemented  by 
a  careful  study  of  the  Holy  Scriptures ;  it  had  advanced 
beyond  the  stage  of  individual  followers  of  Luther  or  Zwingli ; 
it  had  become  united,  a  solid  phalanx  rallied  round  a  manifesto, 
the  Institutio  Christianae  Beligionis,  and  obedient  to  a  leader, 
the  young  Calvin.  On  the  other  side  the  vacillating  policy  of 
Francis  I.  had  given  place  to  the  steadfast  determination  of 
Henry  II.  to  crush  the  Reformation.  The  young  king  himself, 
his  all-powerful  mistress,  Diane  de  Poitiers,  the  great  Constable 


34  Buchanan  and  Continental  Thought 

de  Montmorency,  the  Guises— all  the  king's  favourite 
councillors — were  strong  supporters  of  Romanism  and  were 
resolute  to  destroy  the  growing  Protestantism  of  France. 
Their  declared  policy  was  to  slay  the  Reformation  by  attacking 
its  partisans  through  every  form  of  legal  oppression  that  could 
be  devised.  All  the  repressive  measures  introduced  during  the 
latter  years  of  Francis  I.  were  retained,  and  a  series  of  new 
edicts,  culminating  in  the  Edict  of  Chateaubriand,  were 
published,  which  aimed  at  uniting  all  the  forces  of  the  kingdom 
to  extirpate  the  reformed  faith.  A  second  court,  the  Chambre 
Ardente,  had  been  added  to  the  Parlement  of  Paris  to  deal 
with  cases  of  heresy.  Armed  with  this  legislation,  aided  by  a 
numerous  body  of  ecclesiastical  police,  the  work  of  hunting  out 
all  suspected  of  holding  the  new  doctrines  was  strenuously 
carried  on.  Certain  prisons  were  specially  reserved  for  the 
Protestant  martyrs — the  Conciergerie  and  the  Grand  Chatelet — 
and  they  soon  overflowed.  The  cells  of  the  one  were  below  the 
level  of  the  Seine  and  water  oozed  in  through  the  walls ;  the 
Grand  Chatelet  was  noted  for  its  terrible  dungeons,  so  small 
that  the  prisoners  could  neither  stand  upright  nor  lie  at  full 
length  on  the  floor.  Diseases  decimated  the  victims;  the 
plague  slew  sixty  in  one  year  in  the  Grand  Chatelet  alone. 
Few  were  acquitted ;  almost  all,  once  arrested,  suffered  torture 
and  death.  It  was  in  the  midst  of  these  surroundings  that 
Buchanan,  an  unprotected  scholar,  resolved  to  adhere  to  the 
Reformation. 

T.  M.  L. 


V. 
George  Buchanan  k  Bordeaux. 

Il  semble  que  Buchanan,  qui  redigeait  ses  souvenirs  en  1580, 
deux  ans  avant  sa  mort,  se  trompe  sur  la  duree  de  son  sejour 
a  Bordeaux:    il  dut  y  demeurer  plus  de  trois  ans. 

On  sait  que,  vers  la  fin  de  1539,  Franyois  I.  avait  ofEert  a 
Charles-Quint  de  passer  par  la  France  pour  aller  d'Espagne  aux 
Pays-Bas  reduire  la  sedition  de  Gand.  Le  20  novembre, 
I'empereur  traversa  la  Bidassoa ;  il  f ut  salue  a  Bayonne  par  le 
dauphin,  le  due  d'Orleans  et  le  connetable  de  Montmorency, 
qui  avaient  mission  de  I'escorter  dans  son  voyage.  Ordre  etait 
donne  a  toutes  les  villes  de  recevoir  Charles,  ' '  comme  on  re9oit 
les  rois  de  France  a  leur  joyeux  avenement."  Bordeaux  lui 
rendit,  le  1  d^cembre,  les  honneurs  souverains  que  la  plure 
seule  contraria ;  les  jurats  lui  presenterent  les  clefs  de  la  ville 
travaillees  en  argent ;  il  delivra  des  prisonniers  et  tint  dans  la 
cathedrale  le  chapitre  de  la  toison  d'or.^ 

Le  College  de  Guyenne  vint  ofErir  ses  hommages  et  ses  voeux 
a  I'empereur.  En  decembre  1539,  Buchanan  avait  deja  dans 
I'etablissement  une  place  assez  importante  pour  etre  charge  de 
haranguer  et  de  complimenter  Charles-Quint  en  vers  latins  au 
nom  de  la  "  Schola  Burdegalensis."  On  trouve  dans  le  recueil 
de  ses  Silvce  une  piece  de  soixante-dix  hexametres  dont 
I'eloquence  un  peu  emphatique  fait  moins  penser  aux  Silves  de 
Stace  qu'aux  Panegyriques  de  Claudien :  le  poete  dit  combien 
Bordeaux  s'enorgueillit  de  recevoir  un  bote  aussi  illustre;  il 
conjure  I'empereur  de  ne  pas  mepriser  I'hospitalite  bordelaise, 
quelque  mesquine  qu'elle  puisse  lui  sembler ;  dans  le  palais 
d'aucun  roi,  il  ne  trouvera  pareil  devouement,  pareille  fidelite.'' 

1  Henri  Martin,  Hisioire  de  France,  Paris  (Edition  de  1857),  t.  VIII.,  p. 
258-259.— C.  JulUan,  Histoire  de  Bordeaux,  Bordeaux,  1895,  p.  334. 

^  Ad  Carolum  V  Imperatorem,  Burdegalm  hospitio  publico  siisceptum, 
nomine  Scholoe  Burdegalensis,  anno  m.d.  xxxix.  (Buclianani  Opera  omnia, 
^dit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  324-326. 

Cf.  V.  19  :  Burdegalam  tamen  ille  tuam,  tua  tecta,  Garumna 
Ingens  hospes  init. 


36  George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux 

La  Chronique  de  Gabriel  de  Lurbe  rapporte  que  Pran9ois 
I.  s'arreta  a  Bordeaux,  en  1542,  alors  qu'il  allait  apaiser  la 
revolte  de  La  Rochelle.'  Nous  ne  voyons  pas  qu'on  lui  ait 
rendu  les  honneurs  qui  avaient  ete  rendus  trois  ans  auparavant 
a  Charles-Quint  traversant  la  France  pour  aller  reduire  la 
rebellion  de  Gand.  Nous  ne  trouvons  dans  les  oeuvres  de 
Buchanan  aucune  Silva  "  ad  Franciscum  I  Regem."  Mais  le 
professeur  ecossais  etait  encore  a  Bordeaux  quand  Frangois  I. 
y  passa ;  il  appartenait  encore  au  College  de  Guyenne  quand  il 
apprit  que  le  roi  Jacques  V  etait  mort,  le  16  decembre  1542. 
Cette  mort,  qui  le  delivrait  de  tout  sujet  de  crainte  de  la  part 
du  cardinal  Beaton,^  lui  permettait  de  rester  sans  danger  dans 
notre  ville.  II  assista,  sans  doute,  au  succes  de  sa  seconde 
piece,  la  Medee,  qui  fut  jouee  au  College  de  Guyenne  en  1543," 
puisque  c'est  ce  succes  qui  I'incita  a  donner  encore  plus  de  soin 
a  la  composition  du  Jephthe  et  de  \' Alceste  qu'il  ecrivit  aussi  a 
Bordeaux. 

Buchanan  dit,  dans  son  autobiographic,  qu'il  a  compose  ses 
tragedies  pour  detourner  la  jeunease  des  allegories  ou  la  France 
prenait  alors  un  plaisir  extreme.  Depuis  que  le  Eoman  de  la 
Base  avait  donne  la  vie  a  des  personnages  appeles  Jaloiisie, 
Faiix-Semhlant  et  Bel-Accueil,  ces  personnages  s'etaient  intro- 

V.  50  :  Burdegalie  exiguos  ne  dedignere  penates 

Plospitio  sancire  tuo  :  quas  disparo  quamvis 
Fortuna3  splendore  tuo,  parvoque  paratu 
Te  capit  hospitio,  studio  in  te  forte  fideli 
Atque  animo  Regum  ingentes  Eequaverit  aulas. 
^  Burdigalensiwm   rerum    Chronicon,    auctore    Gab.    Lurbeo.    Bordeaux, 
Millanges,  2"  6dit.,  1590,  recto  du  feuillet  23. 

^Nous  n'avons  aucun  renseignement  sur  la  peste  qui,  d'aprfes  la  Vita, 
aurait  envahi  I'Aquitaine  au  moment  de  la  mort  de  Jacques  V.,  c'est-A-dire  A 
la  fin  de  1542  ou  au  commencement  de  1543.  La  Chronique  de  Gabriel  de 
Lurbe  mentionne  aeulement  i  la  date  de  1546  une  peste  dont  les  progrfe 
forcferent  le  Parlement  h,  se  ri^fugier  a  Libourne,  pendant  les  mois  de  scptenibre 
et  d'octobre. 

'  La  Bibliothfeque  muuicipale  de  Bordeaux  posafede  un  exomplaire  de 
r^dition  de  1543  :  MEDEA  Euripidis  pottm  tragici  Oeorgio  Bnchanano  Scoio 
interpreie.  PARISITS.  Ex  Officina  Miehaelis  Vawomni,  in  via  qua-  est  ad 
divum  lacohum,  sub  Fontis  innigni.  M.T),  XLIII.  cum  pririlegio.  Lo  privilege 
est  dat6  de  "  Parisiia,  xv.  Calend.  Maii  M.D.  XLIII."  Au  vorso  du  feuillet 
32  ot  dornier  du  volume,  on  lit:  "Acta  fuit  Burdcgala'.  an  M.D.  XLIII." 
Dans  la  Prrfaco  adressc'io  au  trds  illustvo  Prince  Jean  de  Luxembourg,  abb6 
d'lvry  fnd  IlhiMrinnmum  Principem  Jommim  a  Laeemhnrgo,  Iveriaci  abhatemj, 
I'auteur  s'oxcuae  modiistcniont  d'avoir  osr,  aprt-s  Kraame,  mcttre  en  latin  les 
pieces  d'Euripide. 


George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux  37 

duits  au  theatre  avec  les  Moralites.  Le  public  s'amusait  aux 
subtilites  naives  des  allegories;  il  goutait  fort  les  discours 
contradictoires  de  Bien-advise  et  de  Mal-advise,  de  Donne-Fin 
et  de  Male-Fin.  Nous  ignorons  quels  etaient  les  proverbes 
pedagogiques  dont  le  College  de  Guyenne  faisait  ses  delices  au 
moment  oii  Buchanan  fut  appele  a  y  enseigner ;  mais  nous 
Savons  que,  des  ses  origines,  il  se  preoccupait  de  representa- 
tions theatrales. 

Le  9  avril  1526,  en  I'honneur  du  passage  de  Franjois  I. 
a  Bordeaux,  on  oSrait  au  roi,  sur  un  theatre  eleve  au  fond  de 
la  place  de  I'Ombriere,  le  spectacle  d'une  piece  allegorique, 
oeuvre  de  quelque  professeur  du  College  des  Arts,  qui  mettait 
en  scene  les  Vertus  theologales.'^ 

Quand  le  College  des  Arts,  qui  vegetait  depuis  1441,  fut 
remplace  par  le  College  de  Guyenne,  le  premier  principal  du 
nouvel  etablissement,  Jehan  de  Tartas,  exigea  que  les  regents 
fussent  capables  de  "  composer  et  prononcer  oraisons,  haran- 
gues, dialogues  et  comedies."  II  parait  que  les  representations 
que  Ton  organisait  alors  eurent  peu  de  succes.^ 

Gouvea,  qui  estimait  que  le  theatre  scolaire  etait  un  element 
indispensable  de  I'education  de  la  jeunesse,  excita  Buchanan 
a  ecrire  des  pieces  a  I'usage  des  eleves  du  College  de  Guyenne. 
Peut-etre,  pour  prouver  aux  lettres  de  Bordeaux  que  des  tra- 
gedies savantes  composees  a  I'imitation  des  modeles  classiques 
remplaceraient  avantageusement  les  pieces  vulgaires  oii  la 
populace  s'empressait,  Baptistes  sive  Calumnia  fut-il  represente 
au  College,  le  24  juin,  en  ce  jour  de  la  fete  de  saint  Jean- 
Baptiste  ou  les  tonneliers  se  promenaient  en  cortege  a  travera 
la  ville,  celebrant  sur  des  theatres  eleves  en  divers  quartiers 
les  mysteres  du  bapteme  de  Jesus,  "  a  la  grande  joie  du  popu- 
laire  qui  accourait  en  foule."^  L'anniversaire  de  la  Nativite  de 
saint  Jean-Baptiste  etait  au  nombre  des  jours  feries  ou,  suivant 
les  statuts  du  College  de  Guyenne,  rediges  par  Andre  de 
Gouvea,   les  classes  et  les  travaux  etaient  interrompus.^ 

Malgre  le  merite  des  oeuvres  theatrales  de  Buchanan  et,  sans 
doute,  aussi  de  celles  des  autres  regents  qui  ecrivaient  comme 
lui  des  tragedies  antiques,  la  vogue  des  representations  classi- 

'  Gaullieur,  Histoire  du  ColUge  de  Cfuyenne,  p.  20. 

2  Gaullieur,  Histoire  du  GolUge  de  Ouyenne,  p.  253-254. 

'  Jullian,  Histoire  de  Bordeaux,  p.  356. 

*  Schola  Aquilanica,  6dit.  de  L.  Massebieau,  Paris,  1886,  p.  44. 


38  George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux 

ques,  toujours  restreinte  dans  les  murs  du  College  de  Guyenne, 
n'y  fufc  pas  de  longue  duree. 

Montaigne  nous  dit  son  succes  comme  acteur  des  tragedies 
latines  qui  se  donnaient  au  College  de  Guyenne  vera  1545  : 

Mettray-ie  en  oompte  cette  faculty  do  mon  enfance :  vne  asseurance  de 
visage,  et  soupplesse  de  voix  et  de  geste,  h,  m'appliquer  aux  roUes  que  i'entre- 
prenois  ?    Car,  auaiit  I'aage, 

Alter  ab  vndeoimo  turn  me  vix  ceperat  anuus, 

i'ai  soustenu  les  premiers  persoimages  is  tragedies  latines  de  Bucanan,  de 
Guerente'  et  de  Muret,'  qui  se  representairent  en  nostre  college  de  Guienne 
auec  dignite.  En  cela  Andreas  Goueanus,  nostre  principal,  comme  en  toutes 
autres  parties  de  sa  charge,  tut  sans  comparaison  le  plus  grand  principal  de 
France  ;  et  m'en  tenoit-on  maistre  ouurier. " 

Ce  passage  des  Essais  refute  Fopinion  de  Patin  qui  affirme, 
sans  preuves,  que  Buchanan  eut,  "  au  College  de  Bordeaux, 
Montaigne  pour  ecolier  sinon  pour  acteur."^  Montaigne  a  ete 
I'acteur  des  pieces  de  Buchanan ;  il  a  ete  son  ecolier,  sinon 
I'eleve  de  la  classe  qui  etait  dirigee  par  I'humaniste  ecossais  et 
qui  correspondait  a  ce  qu'on  appelle  aujourd'hui  la  "  rheto 
rique  superieure."  Le  plan  d'etudes  de  la  Schola  Aquitanica 
indique  I'existence  de  dix  classes  regulieres  depuis  le  decimus 
ordo,  oil  Ton  apprenait  a  lire,  jusqu'au  'primus  ordo,  ou  Ton 
declamait  en  particulier  et  publiquement.  Ces  classes  furent  au 
nombre  de  douze  pendant  la  periode  de  grande  prosperite  du 
College   ou  il   avait   ete   necessaire,    a   cause   de   I'aflBuence   des 

'  Le  rouennais  Guillaume  de  Gu^rente,  compatriote,  condisciple  et  ami  de 
Nicolas  de  Grouchy,  avait  commence  par  exeroer  la  ra^decine.  Quand  Grouchy 
quitta  Rouen  pour  aller  professer  k  Sainte-Barbe,  Gu^rente  le  suivit  et  enseigua 
dans  le  menie  college  d'ofi  Gouv6a  lea  amena  tous  les  deux  i  Bordeaux,  en 
1534.  Grouchy  fut  professeur  de  dialectique  i"i  la  Schola  Aquiianica;  Guereute, 
professeur  d'humanit6s  :  nous  ne  aavons  rien  de  ses  tragedies. 

-Marc  Antoine  Muret  n'a  &t&  professeur  au  College  de  Guyenne  que  sous 
le  prinoipalat  de  Gelida,  vers  1548.  C'est,  sans  doute,  dans  le  Juliiu)  Casar, 
qu'il  composa  en  1543  ou  en  1544,  itant  professeur  k  Auoh,  que  Montaigne  a 
soutenu  le  premier  personnage.  II  est  probable  que  les  coUiigues  de  Buchanan 
ne  se  conformaient  pas  aussi  exactement  que  lui  aux  pri6res  de  Gouvt^'a,  qui 
riSclamait  de  chacun  de  ses  regents  une  tragedio  par  anni^'e,  puisque  I'on  devait 
reoourir  aux  pieces  d'un  humaniste  otranger  au  College. — Ou  trouvo  dans 
I'lidition  des  Juvenilia  de  Muret,  publieo  f\  Paris,  en  1553,  cinq  distiques 
lilugiaques  do  Buchanan,  tr»':s  (Slogioux,  in  JuUum  G<vmrcm,  Iragmdiam  M. 
Antonii  MurUi.     Cf.  Buclianani  Opera  omnia,  6dit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  169. 

^  Montaigne,  Ennaia,  I. ,  xxvi. 

■■  Patin,  tHiid&s  aur  la  Iragt'dit  gnuque,  vol.  III.,  p.  221. 


George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux  39 

eleves,  de  subdiviser  en  deux  sections  le  Septimus  et  le  sextus 
ordo.^ 

Montaigne  nous  donne  les  dates  de  sa  naissance  et  de  son 
entree  au  College  de  Guyenne : 

le  nasquis  entre  vnzc  heures  et  midi  le  dernier  iour  de  Feburier  mil  cinq 
oens  trente  trois.  ^ 

Feu  mon  pere  .  .  .  m'eimoya,  euuiroii  mea  six  ans,  au  College  de  Guienne, 
tres-florissant  pour  lors,  et  le  meilleur  de  France.  Et  liY,  il  n'est  possible  de 
rien  adiouster  au  soing  qu'il  eut,  et  i  mo  ohoisir  dos  precepteurs  de  ohambre 
suffisans,  et  i,  toutes  les  autres  oirooustances  de  ma  nourriture,  en  laquelle  il 
reserua  plusieurs  faforis  partieulieres  contre  I'vaage  des  colleges. " 

Entre  en  1539  au  College  de  Guyenne  d'oii  il  devait  sortir  en 
1546,  Montaigne  n'a  pu  evidemment  avoir  pour  professeur  de 
Rhetorique  Buchanan  qui  n'appartenait  plus  au  personnel  de 
la  Schola  Aquitanica  quand  il  arriva  lui-meme  au  •primus  ordo. 
Mais  I'auteur  des  Essais  cite  en  termes  precis  Buchanan  parmi 
les  ' '  precepteurs  de  chambre  "  que  son  pore  lui  avait  donnes, 
"  reseruant  plusieurs  fagons  partieulieres  contre  I'vsage  des 
colleges."  II  se  vante,  en  e£Eet,  de  son  habilete  a  "  latiniser," 
habilete  qui  lui  venait  de  sa  premiere  education  domestique, 
et  qui  etait  admiree  par  les  regents  du  College : 

Nicolas  Groucclii,  qui  a  escrifc  "de  eomitiis  Romanorum,"*  Guillaurae 
Guerente,  qui  a  comments  Aristote, "  George  Bucanan,  ce  grand  poete 
escossois.  Marc  Antoine  Muret  que  la  France  et  I'ltalie  reconoit  pour  le 
meillur  oratur  du  temps,  mes  precepteurs  domestiques,  m'ont  diet  souuent  que 
i'auois  ce  langage,  en  mon  enfance,  si  prest  et  si  i  main,  qu'ils  craingnoient 
k  m'a.ocoster.  Bucanan,  que  ie  vis  depuis  k  la  suite  de  feu  monsieur  le 
Mareschal  de  Brissac,  °  me  dit  qu'il  estoit  apres  h  escrire  de  I'institution  des 
'  Schola  Aquitanica,  p.  4-24,  note  9  de  la  p.  58. 

^  Montaigne,  Essais,  I.  xx. 

'  Montaigne,  Essais,  I.  xxvi. 

^  De  eomitiis  Romanorum,  libri  tres,  Paris,  1553.  Le  risum^  de  I'enseigue- 
ment  que  Grouchy  donna  au  College  de  Guyenne  pendant  treize  ans  (1534-1547) 
est  contenu  dans  son  livre  de  Prceceptiones  dialecticae  (Paris,  1552),  que  Vinet 
appr^ciait  et  recommandait.     Cf.  Schola  Aqidtanicn,  p.  26. 

^  Guerente  n'a  pas  comments  Aristote.  ' '  On  a  de  lui  un  avis  au  lecteur 
en  tete  d'un  ouvrage  de  Grouchy  sur  la  Logiqae  d' Aristote,  et,  dans  le  mSme 
volume,  une  piece  de  vers  adress6e  par  Gu6rente  k  son  ami."  (Gaullieur, 
Histoire  du  Collige  dc  Guyenne,  p.  91.) 

^Buchanan  fut  pr^cepteur  de  Timol^on  de  Biissac,  de  1554  k  1560. 
Lieutenant  g6n6ral  du  roi  en  Pigment  du  9  juillet  1550  au  31  mars  1559, 
le  mar^ohal  de  Brisaac  ne  vint  k  la  oour  que  pendant  I'anncSe  1556.  A  partir 
de  1559,  il  fut  gouverneur  de  Pioardie.  Montaigne  quitta,  en  1559,  Bordeaux, 
ou  il  6tait  conseiller  au  Parlement,  pour  faire  un  grand  voyage  k  la  oour. 
C'est  pendant  ce  voyage  qu'il  retrouva  son  ancien  "  precepteur  de  chambre  "  k 
la  suite  du  mar^ohal  de  Brissac,  gouverneur  de  Pioardie.  Nous  ne  connaissons 
pas  d'ouvrage  de  Buchanan  sur  "  I'institution  des  enfans." 


40  George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux 

eiifans,  et  qu'il  prenoit  exomplaire  do  la  mienne  :  car  il  auoit  lors  en  charge  oe 
Comte  do  Brissao  que  nous  auona  veu  depuis  si  valeureux  et  si  braue.  * 

On  sait  ce  qu'il  faut  entendre  par  "precepteurs  de  chambre" 
ou  "  precepteurs  domestiques."  Lea  colleges  du  xvie  siecle 
possedaient,  en  meme  temps  que  les  boursiers  et  les  portionistes 
ou  pensionnaires,  un  certain  nombre  de  cameristes,  jeunes  gens 
riches  qui  etaient  en  chambre,  se  nourrissant  a  leurs  frais  et 
travaillant  sous  la  direction  d'un  pedagogue  ou  precepteur 
particulier.^  Les  regents  amelioraient  ainsi  leur  situation 
pecuniaire  qui  etait  fort  mediocre/  en  se  faisant  les  "  precep- 
teurs de  chambre "  de  cameristes  qui  pouvaient  ne  pas 
appartenir  a  leur  classe.  C'est  ainsi  que  Montaigne  eut  pour 
"  precepteurs  domestiques,"  au  meme  titre  que  I'humaniste 
Guerente,  dont  il  fut  sans  doute  I'eleve,  Buchanan  dont  il  ne 
fut  pas  le  disciple  dans  le  primus  ordo,  et  Muret,  qui  etait 
probablement  autorise  a  se  charger  d'educations  particulieres 
avant  d'etre  pourvu  d'une  nomination  officielle  de  professeur. 

Trompe  par  I'expression  "  precepteur  domestique,"  dont  il 
ne  comprend  pas  le  sens  exactement,  Th.  Ruddiman  suppose 
que  Buchanan,  qui,  d'apres  son  autobiographic,  aurait  enseigne 
trois  ans  seulement  au  College  de  Guyenne,  fut,  de  1542  a 
1544,  precepteur  de  Montaigne  dans  sa  famille.'' 

Cette  hypothcse  a  servi  de  pretexte  a  Gaullieur  pour  imagi- 
ner  un  petit  roman  qui  a  passe  dans  la  plupart  des  ouvrages  de 
seconde  main  oil,  depuis  une  trentaine  d'annees,  on  s'est 
occupe  de  la  biographie  de  Montaigne.  L'auteur  de  I'Histoire 
du  College  de  Gui/enne  pretend  que,  effraye  par  les  persecutions 
dont  les  lutheriens  etaient  I'objet  a  Bordeaux,  en  1541, 
Buchanan  prit  la  f  uite : 

Il  trouva  d'abord  un  asile  dans  la  famille  de  I'un  des  plus  jeunes  Aleves  du 
CoUfcge  de  Guyenne,  dont  le  pfere  possiSdait  h  quclques  lieues  de  la  ville,  sur 
les  bords  de  la  Dordogne,  une  propri6t6  seigneuriale  appelte  Monlaiijne,  qui 
relevait  de  I'archeveque  de  Bordeaux,  "  au  debvoir  d'un  baiser  sur  la  joue." 

'  Montaigne,  Easais,  I. ,  xxvi. 

^  J.  Quicherat,  Histoire  de.  Sainie-Barhe,  t,  I.,  p.  74. 

'Gaullieur  cite  (Hid.  du  CoUhin  de  Guyenne,  p.  82),  un  arroto  de  la 
Jurade  qui  fixe  les  traitoments  aniiuels  des  professeurs  k  des  sommes  variant 
entre  soixante  et  trente  livres  tournois.  En  1548,  les  appointenionts  d'un 
rc'igont  de  promi6re,  logt:  et  nourri,  (itaieut  au  Colkigo  de  Guyenne,  de  tronte 
(Sous  k  la  couronne.  Un  iVlit  do  1533  avait  fixe  k  quaranto  sous  et  six  deniers 
la  valour  de  r6cu  k  la  couronne.  Voir  R.  Dezoimoris,  De  la  Rmaissance  des 
Lettres  d  Bordeaux  au  X  VI'  nittch,  Bordeaux,  1864,  note  5  de  la  p.  34. 

'  Buc/ianani  Opera  omnia,  edit  de  1725,  t.  I.,  note  40  de  la  Vita. 


George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux  41 

Aiiisi,  chose  singuliere,  ce  fut  sur  les  terres  de  Charles  de  Grammont  que 
Buchanan  cheroha  d'abord  un  refuge  contre  les  poursuitea  de  ce  pr(51at. 

.  .  .  II  ne  dut  Tester  que  pexi  de  temps  chez  lo  p6re  de  son  616ve  dont  la 
maison  seigneuriale  6tait  trop  voisine  de  Bordeaux  :  11  quitta  I'asile  dans 
lequel,  en  ces  temps  diffioiles,  il  avait  trouv6  une  ginereuse  hospitality,  et 
partit  pour  Paris.     C'est  la  que  le  retrouva,  en  1542,  son  ami  Elie  Vinet. ' 

En  1542,  Buchanan  n'etait  pas  a  Paris :  c'est  a  Bordeaux 
qu'il  apprit  que  le  roi  Jacques  V  etait  mort,  le  16  decembre 
1542.  Son  sejour  se  prolongea  au  College  de  Guyenne,  puisque 
c'est  a  la  suite  de  sa  Medee,  jouee  en  1543,  qu'il  travailla  avec 
soin  son  Alceste  et  son  Jephthe.  II  ne  quitta  Bordeaux  qu'apres 
y  avoir  ecrit  ces  deux  pieces  dont  la  composition  dut  lui 
couter  un  certain  temps.  II  n'avait  aucune  raison  de  se  dero- 
ber  aux  poursuites  de  rarcheveque  de  Bordeaux,  qui  I'avait 
protege  contre  les  persecutions  du  cardinal  Beaton.  Charles  de 
Grammont  mourut  en  1544 :  c'est  probablement  apres  la  mort 
de  son  protecteur,  au  moment  oil  les  Jurats  donnaient  a  son 
ami  Andre  de  Gouvea  I'autorisation  de  quitter  la  Schola 
Aquitanica,  que  Buchanan  partit  lui-meme  pour  Paris.  Et, 
quand  il  eut  cesse  d'appartenir  au  College  de  Guyenne,  on 
continua  d'y  representer  ses  tragedies,  puisque  c'est  a  I'age  de 
douze  ans — c'est-a-dire  en  1545 — que  son  ancien  cameriste, 
Michel  de  Montaigne,  soutenait  "  les  premiers  personnages  es 
tragedies  latines  de  Bucanan." 

Buchanan  ne  parle  jamais  de  Montaigne,  qui  fut  son  "  eleve 
de  chambre  "  et  I'un  des  principaux  acteurs  de  ses  tragedies. 
Aucune  des  nombreuses  pieces,  petites  ou  grandes,  legeres  ou 
serieuses,  qui  composent  les  divers  recueils  des  Elegies,  des 
Stives,  des  Hendecasyllahes,  des  lambes,  des  Epigrammes  et  des 
Miscellanies  n'est  dediee  a  I'auteur  des  Essais.  Le  regent  du 
primus  urdo  ne  nomme,  d'ailleurs,  nulle  part  aucun  des  ecoliers 
du  College  de  Guyenne  qui  furent  eleves  dans  sa  classe  ou  qui 
tinrent  un  role  dans  ses  pieces. 

Pendant  qu'il  enseignait  a  Sainte-Barbe,  le  poete  ecossais  se 
consolait  des  ennuis  et  des  servitudes  des  professeurs  parisiens 
en  les  racontant  en  Jolis  vers  latins ;  plus  heureux,  sans  doute, 
a  Bordeaux,  Buchanan  ne  consacre  aucune  elegie  a  deplorer 
la  condition  des  regents  du  College  de  Guyenne. 

II  se  conformait,  sans  murmurer,  au  programme  etabli  par 

^  Histoire  du  College  de  Oaiyenne,  p.  164-165.  Gaullieur  ne  cite  pas  le 
passage  de  Ruddiman  auquel  il  a  dH  emprunter  le  tli6me  de  cette  amplifica- 
tion. 


42  George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux 

Andre  de  Gouvea.  Le  matin,  a  huit  heures,  il  commentait 
devant  ses  eleves  du  ■primus  ordo  les  preceptes  de  I'art  oratoire 
d'apres  Ciceron  et  Quintilien.  A  neuf  heures,  il  faisait 
oxpliquer  un  discoura  de  Ciceron,  pour  confirmer  ces  preceptes 
par  la  pratique  dea  anciena.  A  midi,  il  enseignait  I'histoire  des 
Grecs  et  des  Romains  d'apres  Tite-Live,  Justin,  Seneque, 
Eutrope  ct  Pomponius  Mela.  Le  soir  a  trois  heures,  il 
presidait  a  I'etude  de  la  poetique  latine  d'apres  Virgile,  d'abord, 
puis  d'apres  Lucain  et  Perse,  enfin  d'apres  Horace,  Ovide, 
Juvenal,  dans  les  passages  de  ces  auteurs  assez  convenablea  pour 
etre  mis  sous  les  yeux  des  jeunes  gens.  A  cinq  heures,  le 
maitre  dictait  le  sujet  d'une  courte  piece  de  vers  latins  qui 
devait  etre  composee  et  remise  avant  la  fin  de  la  classe. 

Le  Icndemain,  les  eleves  portaient  la  redaction  de  ce  qui 
avait  ete  enseigne  la  veille  et  recitaient  les  passages  qui  avaieut 
ete  expliques  aux  legons  du  matin  et  du  soir.  lis  "  decla- 
maient  "  leurs  compositions  litteraires  en  particulier,  dans  leur 
classe,  le  samedi  matin;  en  public,  dans  1'  "  aula,"  devant  tout 
le  college  reuni  au  son  de  la  cloche,  chaque  dimanche,  a  une 
heure  de  I'apres-midi,  a  partir  du  1  novembre. 

La  declamation  etait  le  aeul  exercice  du  dimanche ;  le  lundi, 
le  mercredi,  le  vendredi  et  le  samedi,  il  y  avait  classe  de  huit 
a  dix  heures  du  matin,  de  midi  a  une  heure,  et,  le  soir,  de  trois 
a  cinq ;  le  mardi  et  le  jeudi,  il  n'y  avait  classe  que  de  trois 
a  quatre  heures.  Les  jours  feries  de  la  ville  de  Bordeaux — fcsti 
dies  civitutis  Burdegalensis, — qui  etaient  au  nombre  de  qua- 
rante-troia,  on  interrompait  les  le9ons.  Les  vacances  propre- 
ment  dites  etaient  fort  courtes :  les  conges  de  Paques 
commen9aient  le  mercredi  matin  de  la  semaine  sainte  et  se 
terminaient  le  soir  du  mardi  qui  suit  le  dimanche  de  la 
Quasimodo ;  les  conges  d'automne  duraient  du  20  septembre  au 
soir  au  1  octobre.  Pendant  ces  dix  jours,  les  eloves  etaient 
envoyes  chez  eux  pour  les  vendanges :  piitri  dimiftiintur 
vindemiatiiri.^  Et  alors,  dit  Buchanan,  dans  un  de  ses  poemes, 
"  quand  los  vacances  des  vendanges  ferment  les  ecoles,  les 
jeunes  gens  regagnent  les  penates  paternels ;  en  ville,  c'est  la 
solitude;     dans    les    demeures,    un    morne    silence."^     Aucune 

'  Schola  Aqtiiianica,  p.  24 ;  p.  42,  44,  46  j  p.  IH. 

' lamhon  liher,  v.  {/iuchimani  Opera  omnia,  edit,  do  17-."),  t.  II.,  p.  352). 
ea  pi6oos  ii.-v.  du  livro  dos  lamhm  out  iMo  coinpuaces  jl  Coimbre  (cf.  ii.,  v. 
29-30).  Gouv6a  mottoit  on  usiigo  dans  lo  oolkNgo  portugais  les  rfeglements  qu'il 
avait  r6digi5s  pour  la  Schola  Aqiiilanica. 


George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux  43 

distribution  de  couronnes  scolaires  ne  precedait  ces  vacances  de 
septembre.  "  Ce  n'est  que  beaucoup  plus  tard,  et  par  imitation 
de  ce  qui  se  pratiquait  chez  les  jesuites,  que  I'Universite 
consacra  la  solennite  des  prix  annuels  dans  les  colleges."^ 

Buchanan  ne  fait  allusion  dans  ses  poemes  a  aucun  episode 
de  sa  vie  scolaire  a  Bordeaux.  Les  Miscellanets  contiennent 
une  tres  belle  ode  de  huit  strophes  saphiques  dans  le  gout 
d'Horace,  qui  merite  d'etre  comptee  parmi  celles  de  ses  pieces 
lyriques  que  le  pere  Rapin  jugeait  "  dignes  de  I'antiquite."- 
Cette  ode,  adressee  a  la  jeunesse  bordelaise,  fut  peut-etre  lue 
a  la  solennite  des  Ludovicalia,  qui  reunissait  le  25  aout,  jour 
de  la  fete  de  Saint-Louis,  au  College,  dont  la  grande  cour  etait 
ornee  de  tapisseries,  la  foule  accourue  de  tons  les  quartiers  de 
Bordeaux,  et,  au  premier  rang.  Messieurs  du  Parlement  et  de 
la  Jurade,  personnages  graves  et  doctes.^  Le  poete,  apres 
avoir  chante,  a  la  maniere  du  choeur  de  VOSdipe  a  Colone,  les 
louanges  de  la  Gascogne,  mere  des  heros,  productrice  du  vin 
excellent,  favorisee  de  Pallas,  rappelle  aux  ecoliers  que,  seul,  le 
culte  des  lettres  donne  a  une  ville  I'immortalite : 

Si  tu  n'honores  pas  les  doctes  Muses,  si  tu  ne  donnes  pas  un  soin  fidfele 
aux  bonnes  lettres,  c'est  en  vain  que  tes  espiSrances  tendent  vers  I'avenir. 

.  .  .  Seuls  les  monuments  des  savants  pofetes  echappent  k  I'empire  de  la 
s^vfere  destinfe ;  seuls,  ils  dMaignent  le  Phl^g(5thon  et  les  droits  du  tyrannique 
Orcus.  * 

"II  serait  difficile,"  dit  avec  raison  M.  Dezeimeris,  "  de 
montrer  plus   elegamment   comment   on   doit  imiter   Horace."^ 

Ces  vers  sont  les  seuls  dont  on  puisse  affirmer  avec  certitude 
qu'ils  ont  ete  composes  par  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux,  pour  le 
College  de  Guyenne.  II  ne  se  plaint  nulle  part  d'avoir 
retrouve  sur  les  bancs  de  la  Schola  Aquitanka  des  eleves 
semblables  a  ceux  qui  faisaient  son  desespoir  a  Paris,  oil  les 
uns  manquaient  la  classe,  les  autres,  qui  se  presentaient  sans 
bas  ou  en  souliers  perces,  ronflaient,  se  plaignaient  d'etre 
malades,  ecrivaient  a  leurs  parents,  au  lieu  d'ecouter  le  maitre." 

'  J.  Quioherat,  Histoire  de  Saiiite-Barhe,  t.  I.,  p.  91. 

^  Rapin,  inflexions  sur  la  Poetique  d'Aristote,  Paris,  1674,  2"  partie,  p. 
166  :  "  Bucanan  a  des  Odes  dignes  de  I'Antiquit^." 

^  Schola  Aquitanica,  p.  32. 

^  Miscellaneorum  liber,  ix.  Ad  Juvenlutem  Burdeijalensem,  v,  9-12,  29-32 
{Buchanani  Opera  omnia,  Mit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  414). 

^ R.  Dezeimeris,  De  la  Renaissance  .  .  .,  note  5  de  la  p.  25. 

^  Elegiarum  liber,  i.,  v.  49-54  (Buchanani  Opera  omnia,  kAit.  de  1725,  t. 
II.,  p.  302). 


44  George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux 

Buchanan  se  plait  a  celebrer  dans  ses  vers  latins  les  calendes 
de  mai,  ce  moment  de  I'annee  ou  le  ciel  est  degage  des  nuages, 
ou  la  brise  murmure  dans  les  feuilles  nouvelles  des  arbres,  oii 
il  est  bon  de  faire  sortir  des  tenebres  de  la  cave  le  vin  genereux 
que  les  grappes  donnent  au  sol  sablonneux  de  la  Gascogne.' 
Le  1  mai,  on  plantait  un  pin  devant  la  porte  des  6coles ;  le 
poete  ecrit  des  Epigrammes  en  I'honneur  de  cet  arbre  sacre : ' 
il  ue  nous  dit  pas  si  ses  vers  lui  sont  inspires  par  le  pin  plante 
devant  les  classes  du  College  de  Guyenne. 

En  fait  d'arbres  du  College,  nous  ne  connaissons  que  les 
douze  ormes  qu'Elie  Vinet,  pendant  son  principalat,  planta  de 
ses  propres  mains  dans  la  grande  cour  de  la  Schola  Aquitanica.^ 
C'est  dans  cette  "  area,"  qui  n'etait  pas  encore  ombragee  par 
les  arbres  de  Vinet,  que,  du  temps  qu'il  enseignait  a  Bordeaux, 
Buchanan  se  promeuait  avec  ses  collegues  apres  le  repas  du 
matin.  Cette  promenade  fut  interrompue  un  jour  par  la  visite 
d'un  secretaire  de  I'eveque  d'Angouleme,  qui  se  presentait  dans 
la  cour,  porteur  d'une  inscription  grecque  gravee  sur  une 
plaque  de  plomb.  Le  prelat,  incapable  de  la  dechiffrer,  avait 
recours  a  I'erudition  des  regents  du  College  de  Guyenne. 
George  Buchanan  et  Elie  Vinet,  alors  charge  de  I'enseignement 
des  humanites  et  des  mathematiques,  reussirent  a  lire  et  a 
traduire  les  sept  lignes  dont  I'interpretation  etait  reclamee.* 

C'est  a  Elie  Vinet  que  nous  devons  ce  renseignement,  le  seul 
qui,  a  notre  connaissance,  se  rapporte  a  la  vie  de  Buchanan 
dans  la  Schola  Aquitanica.  Nous  ignorons  si  les  eleves  du 
College  de  Guyenne,  devant  lesquels  il  expliquait,  a  la  seconde 

^  Megiarum  liber,  ii.,  Maim  Calendm  (Buchatumi  Opera  omnia,  6dit.  de 
1725,  t.  II. ,  p.  304-308),  v.  45  et  suiv. 

Cf.  V.  101  :  Neo  tenebris  olautlat  geiierosuin  cella  Lyaium 
Quern  dat  areuoso  Vasconis  uva  solo. 
MiscrUaneoriim  liber,  xi.,  Cahitdoi  Majm  (Buchanani  Optra  omnia,  Mit. 
de  1725,  t.  II. ,  p.  415)  : 

V.  i.  :  Salvete,  saoris  deliciis  saorie 

Majaa  Caleiidffi,  iKtiti.T  et  mero, 
Ludisquo  dioativ;,  jocisque. 
'^  ISpigrammalum   liber   I.    vii. ,    viii.      In  piiium   iiro  /orihuf   nchohrum 
Oaleiid.  Majia — ereclam.  —Ineandem  (/ruclutnani  Optra  omnia,  iidit.  do  1735,  t 
II,,  p.  361). 

•'  "  Duod&cim  ulmoti,  qme  nivijiUari  commodo  el  ornameiUo  kiiiU  loco,  in  araa, 
sua  mnnu  j>l,anlaml,."  {Vila  Efia-  Viiicli,  k  la  fin  des  Atisonii  Ojient,  tHlition 
bordelaiso  de  1 590. ) 

''  Elias  VinetuB  in  Ausoiiii  Bpislolam  .xi.  (Auaonii  Optra,  iSdition  borde- 
laiso du  1690,  seotion  463  F). 


/-^L_ 


< 


1     =e    ■=■ 


George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux  45 

classe  du  matin,  I'un  des  discours  de  Ciceron,  eurenfc  la  primeur 
de  cette  correction  au  texte  du  Fro  Caecina  que  Lambin 
adoptait,  "  Georgii  Buchanani,  Scoti,  viri  cum  omni  doctrina 
prre.stantis,  turn,  Poetce  optimi  auctoritatern,  secutus."^  Nous 
ignorons  si  c'est  alors  qu'Antoine  de  Gouvea,  frere  du  principal, 
et  Jacques  de  Teyves  etaient  ses  collegues  a  Bordeaux  qu'il  leur 
adressa  la  piece  des  Herulecasyllahes  que  J.  Quicherat  qualifie 
de  "  jeu  d'esprit  charmant."^  Une  etroite  amitie,  qui  devait 
durer  toute  la  vie,  s'etait  formee  a  Sainte-Barbe  entre  George 
Buchanan,  Antoine  de  Gouvea  et  Jacques  de  Teyves.  Ce 
dernier, — Biogo  da  Teyva,  en  latin  Jacobus  Tevius, — originaire 
de  Braga,  en  Portugal,  avait  ete,  en  1534,  amene  au  College  de 
Guyenne  par  Andre  de  Gouvea  qu'il  suivit  plus  tard  a 
Coimbre  oii  il  devait  lui  succeder  comme  principal. 

Si  le  regent  du  primus  ordo  ne  nous  revele  rien  de  sa  vie 
de  professeur  a  Bordeaux,  il  nous  donne,  par  contre,  dans  ses 
poemes,  de  nombreuses  indications  sur  ses  actes  en  dehors  des 
murs  du  College  de  Guyenne  et  sur  ses  relations  avec  les 
personnages  notables  de  la  societe  bordelaise.  Pendant  tout  le 
temps  de  son  sejour  a  Bordeaux,  Buchanan  eut  I'honneur  de 
porter  la  parole  au  nom  de  ses  collegues.  A  peine  faisait-il 
partie  du  personnel  du  College,  on  le  chargeait  d'adresser  des 
vers  de  bienvenue  a  I'empereur  Charles  Quint,  le  1  decembre 
1539.  Au  moment  oii  il  allait  quitter  definitivement  les  bords 
de  la  Garonne,  on  lui  confiait  encore,  en  1544,  la  mission  de  se 
faire  I'interprete  des  doleances  du  College  aupres  du  chancelier 
de  France. 

Mais,  durant  ces  cinq  annees  de  vie  bordelaise,  Buchanan  ne 
se  contente  pas  d'etre  le  poete  scolaire  et  officiel,  uniquement 
occupe  a  traduire  du  grec  ou  a  composer  des  tragedies  qui 
seront  jouees  par  les  eleves  du  College,  a  mettre  en  vers 
eloquents  ou  ingenieux  une  Silve  qu'il  declamera  lui-meme 
devant  I'empereur  Charles-Quint,  une  Elegie  et  une  Ode  oii  le 
chancelier  de  France  trouvera  I'expression  tres  litteraire  des 
justes  plaintes,  et  ensuite  celle  de  la  gratitude  du  savant  maitre 
de  la  Schola  Aquitanica. 

Les  classes  faites  aux  ecoliers  du  primus  ordo  n'occupent  pas 
toute  la  journee ;  et,  a  I'heure  de  la  recreation  qui  suit  le  repas 
du  matin,   les  amis   de  la  maison   et   des  regents   franchissent 

''■Buchanani  Optra  omnia,  Mit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  170. 
^  J.  Quicherat,  Histoire  de  Sainte-Barbe,  t.  I.,  p.  135. 


46  George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux 

sous  le  regard  profcecteur  du  concierge,  surveillant  impitoyable 
des  allants  et  dea  venants,  le  seuil  de  la  porte  unique  dent  les 
reglements  voulaient  que  fussenfc  perces  les  murs  du  College,' 
a  la  Schola  Aquitanica,  comme  a  Sainte-Barbe. 

Tous  ceux  des  notables  de  Bordeaux  qui  ont  le  culte  de 
I'antiquite — membres  du  Parlement,  avocats,  medecins  ou 
Jurats — penetrent  dans  cette  cour  oii  le  secretaire  de  I'eveque 
d'Angouleme  portait  son  inscription  grecque  pour  en  obtenir  la 
traduction.  lis  prennent  part  a  la  promenade  des  regents  et 
s'entretiennent  avec  eux  doctement.  Les  jours  feries,  qui  sont 
nombreux,  c'est  le  tour  des  professeurs  du  College  d'aller,  par 
les  rues  etroites  qui  environnent  leur  maison,  rendre  visite 
aux  hotels  des  parlementaires  ou  aux  logis  plus  modestes  des 
medecins  et  des  avocats.  Un  commerce  assidu  de  poesie  latine 
unit  tous  ces  philologues  de  la  Renaissance,  professionnels  et 
amateurs,  qui  rivalisent  d'habilete  dans  I'art,  si  apprecie  au 
xvie  siecle,  de  composer  de  nobles  hexametres  ou  de  tourner 
une  fine  epigramme. 

On  s'etonne  de  trouver  parmi  ces  pieces  une  epitaphe 
qui  n'est  qu'un  long  jeu  de  mots,  depourvu  de  grace  et 
de  mesure,  dont  le  nom  d'Innocent  de  la  Fontaine  fait 
tous  les  frais.  Ne  le  jour  des  saints  Innocents,  envoye 
a  Paris  en  mission,  il  a  ete  I'hote  de  la  paroisse  des 
Innocents ;  il  y  est  mort  le  jour  des  Innocents ;  son  corps 
fut  enterre  dans  I'eglise  des  Innocents,  pres  de  la  fontaine 
des  Innocents.  Comme  sa  vie  s'ecoula  dans  I'innocence,  son 
ame  habite  le  ciel  au  milieu  de  celles  des  Innocents.^ 

Innocent  de  la  Fontaine  etait  un  avocat  bordelais,  ami  du 
College  de  Guyenne.''  Nous  ne  savons  pas  si  le  Conseil  de 
Ville,  dont  il  faisait  partie,  le  chargea  d'une  mission  a  Paris, 
au  cours  de  laquelle  il  serait  mort  et  aurait  ete  enterre  dans 
I'eglise  des  Innocents :  il  semble  qu'en  ce  cas  Buchanan  lui 
aurait  consacre  une  epitaphe  serieuse  et  emue,  comme  il  fit 
pour  Belcier  et  pour  Briand  de  Vallee.  II  est  permis  de 
supposer  que  les  vers  "  Innocentio  Fontano  Burdegalensi 
Poetae  et  Caussidico  "  sont  un  simple  Ivrliis — quelque  peu  lourd, 
suivant  notre  goftt  moderne  qui  le  qualifierait  volontiers  de 
scie — declame     par     I'auteur     dans     une     intime     reunion     de 

'  J.  Quiohorat,  /tin/oire.  de  Sainte-Barhc,  t.  I.,  p.  78. 

''  Epij/rammatum,  liber  II,,  xix.  (J^uchmmni  Opera  omnia,  i^dit.  de  1726, 
t.  II.,  p.  381.) 

'(iauUieur,  Hintoire  du  Gollhje  de  Ouyenne,  p.  133. 


George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux  47 

lafcinistes,  regents  et  hommes  de  loi,  en  presence  du  destinataire 
dispose  a  rire  tout  le  premier  de  sa  bizarre  oraison  funebre. 
Les  austeres  sourcils  de  Buchanan  ne  restaient  pas  tou jours 
fronces,  et  sa  physionomie,  rude  a  I'ordinaire,'  s'egayait 
volontiers  a  des  plaisanteries  qui  nous  paraissent  excessives. 

En  1544,  apres  avoir  cesse  d'etre  professeur  au  College  de 
Guyenne,  Buchanan  avait  passe  au  College  du  Cardinal- 
Lemoine  a  Paris;  il  y  tomba  malade.  Alors  qu'il  souffrait 
cruellement  de  douleurs  rhumatismales,  triste,  decourage,  il 
ecrivait  dans  une  Elegie  adressee  a  deux  de  ses  amis  de 
Bordeaux : 

0  Ptol^m^e,  toi  qui  es  une  partie  de  raon  ame,  6  Jacques  de  Teyves,  toi 
qui  en  es  I'autre,  yous  d^sirez  tous  lea  deux  savoir  oe  que  je  deviens.  Je  vis  ; 
si  Ton  peut  dire  que  I'on  vit,  quand  on  n'est  plus  autre  chose  qu'un  corps, 
poids  inerte,  dont  I'esprit  a  fui.  - 

Si  Jacques  de  Teyves  est  bien  connu,  il  semble,  d'autre  part, 
tres  difficile  d'etablir  quel  etait  I'autre  destinataire  de  I'Elegie. 
Du  temps  qu'il  etait  encore  professeur  au  College  de  Guyenne, 
Buchanan  envoyait  a  ce  "  Ptolemseus  Luxius  Tastaeus "  une 
Silve  qui  lui  disait  tous  les  regrets  causes  par  son  absence,^ 
qui  lui  reprochait  de  s'attarder  au  milieu  des  pierres  et  des 
broussailles  du  Poitou,  loin  de  la  Garonne,  fleuve  de  sa  patrie,* 
et  de  ne  plus  se  soucier  des  coUegues  qui  habitaient  la  meme 
maison  que  lui  et  s'occupaient  du  meme  troupeau.*  Ce  Tastseus 
etait  done  un  Bordelais  habitant  le  College  de  Guyenne,  comme 
Buchanan,  et  charge,  comme  lui,  de  diriger  les  eleves  de  la 
Schola  Aquitanica.  Nous  ne  trouvons  dans  les  listes  de  regents 
donnees  par  Gaullieur  aucun  nom  tel  que   Tastes,   de   Tastes, 

'  David  Buohananus,  De  Claris  doctrina  Scotis  (Buchanani  Opera  omnia, 
kA.  de  1725,  t.  I.,  Testimonia).  " Erat  austero  supercilio,  el  toto  corporis 
habitu  (imo  moribus  hie  nosterj  stibagrestis." 

^  Elegiarum  liber,  iv.  Ad  Ptolemomm  Luxium  Tastmum  et  Jacobum 
Temum,  cum  articulari  morbo  laboraret.  M.D.  XLIV.  (BiicTianani  Opera 
omnia,  Mit.  de  1725,  t.  11.,  p.  314-316),  v.  1-4. 

'  Silvce,  ii.     Desiderium  Ptolemcei  Liixii  Tastmi  (Buchanani  Opera  omnia, 
Mit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  326-329). 
*  Silvce,  II.,  V.  1 : 

Usque  adeo  patrii  sordet  tibi  ripa  Garumnse, 
Pietones  ut  scopulos,  atque  horrida  tesqua  frutetis 
Durus  ames  ? 
^  Sihce,  II.,  V.  3: 

.  .  .  nee  te  sooium  pecorisque  larisque 
Cura  tenet. 


48  George  Buchanan  k  Bordeaux 

Tastef  ou  La  Taste,  dont  le  mot  latin  Tastceus  puisse  etre  la 
traduction. 

Entre  1548  et  1554,  Jehan  Gelida,  charge  de  la  direction  du 
College  de  Guyenne,  oil  il  avait  ete  professeur  en  1536,  adresse 
dc  nombreuses  lettres  a  un  jeune  Bordelais  nomine  Jehan  La 
Taste,  qui  faisait  ses  etudes  de  medecine  a  Paris  et  que  le 
principal  cliargeait  de  recruter  des  maitres  pour  son  etablisse- 
mcnt.'  Le  15  decembre  1554,  de  retour  apres  sept  annees 
d'etudes,  Jehan  La  Taste  passait,  conformement  aux  statuts, 
son  examen  devant  les  jurats  de  Bordeaux;  il  repondait  aux 
questions  posees  par  quatre  medecins.  A  la  suite  de  cette 
epreuve,  soutenue  avec  succes,  il  recevait  I'autorisation  d'exercer 
la  medecine  dans  sa  villa  natale.^  Peut-etre  le  jeune  medecin 
bordelais,  qui  debutait  a  la  fin  de  1554,  est-il  le  fils  du  professeur 
bordelais  "  Ptolemseus  Luxius  Tastasus,"  qui  avait  ete  le 
collegue  de  Buchanan  entre  1539  et  1544.  Mais  nous  devons 
repeter  ce  que  disait  Ruddiman,  en  1725:  "  Quis  hie  fuerit 
Ptolemaeus  Luxius  Tastseus  indagare  nondum  potui."" 

Dans  cette  Elegie,  oil  il  depeint  d'une  maniere  saisissante  ses 
soufErances  physiques  et  ses  angoisses  morales,  Buchanan  parle 
avec  reconnaissance  des  soins  et  de  I'affection  dont  Tentourent 
le  medecin  Charles  Estienne,  fils  du  premier  Henri  Estienne, 
et  ses  collegues  du  College  du  Cardinal-Lemoine,  Gelida  et 
Turnebe.''  Mais  ses  amis  de  Bordeaux  ne  sont  pas  aupres  de 
lui ;  et  plusieurs  des  noms  de  ceux  dont  il  regrette  I'absence 
nous  sont  inconnus. 

Jusqu'a  sa  mort,  Buchanan  entretient  des  relations  avec 
la  ville  on  il  a  enseigne  pendant  sa  jeunesse.  Le  plus 
illustre  des  anciens  eleves  du  College  de  Guyenne,  Montaigne, 
n'oublie  pas  son  ancien  "  precepteur  de  chambre."  Vinet, 
principal  du  College  depuis  1556,  entretient  un  commerce  de 
lettres  avec  le  collegue  qui  a  debute  dans  la  maison  la  meme 
annee  que  lui,  en  1539. 

II  a  deja  ete  rappele  que  Montaigne,  pendant  le  voyage  qu'il 
fit  a  Paris  en  1559,  eut  I'occasion  de  voir  Buchanan,  qui  etait 
alors  "  a  la  suite  de  feu  Monsieur  le  Mareschal  de  Brissac."" 
Les    Essnis    prouvent    qu'il    s'inqui^tait    de    lire    les    ouvrages 

'  Voir  R.  Dezeimeria,  De  la  EenaiK.wnce.  .  .  .,  p.  34-35. 

^Oaullioiir,  IlintohT,  du  College.  <lc  (tnyinne,  p.  2L'2,  n.  2. 

'■'  Buchcmani  Ojinra  omnia,  iVlit.  do  172(5,  t.  II.,  p.  314,  n.  1. 

■•  lilefiia  iv.,  v.  65-71). 

' EHuain,  I.,  xxvi. 


George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux  49 

publies  apres  1559  par  I'auteur  de  Baptisfes  et  de  Jephthes. 
II  le  met  au  nombre  des  plus  grands  poetes  latins  contem- 
porains : 

II  me  semble  aussi  de  la  poesie  qu'elle  a  eu  sa  vogue  en  nostre  sieole. 
Nous  auons  foison  de  bons  artisans  de  oe  meatier  la  :  d'Aurat,  Beze,  Buchanan, 
L'Hospital,  Montdor^,  Turnebus.' 

II  cite,  inexactement  d'ailleurs,  un  passage  du  Francis- 
canus  : 

Pauvre  vaisseau  que  les  flots,  lea  vents  et  le  pilotte  tirassent  k  si  oontraires 
desseins  ! 

In  tarn  diversa,  magister, 
Ventus  et  unda  trahunt. " 

II  ne  se  contents  pas  de  lire  les  poemes :  il  s'interesse  aussi 
aux  traites  politiques  de  Buchanan.  A  propos  du  metier  de  roi, 
qui  lui  semble  "  le  plus  aspre  et  difficile  du  monde,"  il  ecrit : 

Je  feuilletois,  il  n'y  a  pas  un  mois,  deux  liurea  Esoossois  se  combattana 
aur  ce  subject :  le  populaire  rend  le  roy  de  pire  condition  qu'un  charretier  ;  le 
monarchique  le  loge  quelques  brasses  au  dessus  de  Dieu  en  puissance  et 
souverainet^.  ^ 


L'un  des  "deux  liures  Escossois  "  est  le  Dialogus  de  Jure 
Regni,'^  publie  en  1579.  Montaigne  devait  se  plaire  a  la  lecture 
de  cet  ouvrage  elegant  et  bien  ecrit,  dont  I'auteur  semble  etre 
un  eleve  de  Platon,  d'Aristote  et  de  Ciceron,  anime  de  I'esprit 
philosophique  et  litteraire  de  la  Renaissance,  plutot  qu'un 
disciple  de  Calvin  ou  de  Knox,  esclave  des  austeres  doctrines  de 
la  Reforme.^  En  novembre  1579,  Daniel  Rogers,  dans  une 
lettre  a  I'auteur  du  De  Jure  Regni  exprimait  I'admiration  que 
Ton  eprouvait  a  voir  avec  quelle  dexterite  un  vieillard  parvenu 


s,  II.,  xvii. 

2  Essais,  III.,  X. — On  lit  dans  le  Franoiscanus  : 
V.  12  :  Non  secus  ao  navia  lato  jactata  profundo, 

Quam  venti,  violensque  jestus,  oanusque  magiater 

In  diversa  trahunt. 
Boileau  semble  s'etre  aouvenu  du  commencement  de  ce  pofeme. 
V.  1 ;  Unde  novus  rigor  in  vultu  ?  tristisque  severis 

Frons  caperata  minis,  tardique  modestia  gressus  ? 
Satires,  III.,  v.  1 : 

Quel  aujet  inconnu  vous  trouble  et  vous  alti^re  ? 

D'oti  voua  vient  aujourd'hui  cet  air  aombre  et  s^vcJre  ? 
'  Essais,  III. ,  viii. 

*  De  Jwe  Regni  apud  Sco/os,  Dialogus.      Auctore  Georgio  Buchanano, 
Seoto ;  62  pages  ii  la  fin  du  tome  I.  de  I'^dition  de  1725. 

''  Voir  sur  le  Be  Jure  Regni,  Paul  Janet,  Histoire  de  la  science  politique, 
Paris,  1872,  t.  II.,  p.  173. 
E 


50  George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux 

a  I'hiver  de  la  vie  maniait  le  dialogue  platonicien.'  Buchanan 
se  donne,  en  effet,  quelque  chose  de  la  bonhomie  de  Socrate  et 
aussi  de  I'indulgente  austerite  que  Ciceron  attribue  a  Caton 
dans  ses  dialogues  philosophiques ;  son  jeune  interlocufceur  a 
I'aimable  ingenuite  des  adolescents  que  Platon  montre  tout 
disposes  a  se  laisser  persuader  par  la  parole  et  convaincre  par 
les  raisonnements  du  maitre. 

Nous  ignorons  quel  est  I'autre  des  ' '  deux  liures  Escossois  " 
que  Montaigne  prenait  plaisir  a  feuilleter.  II  ne  peut  etre 
evidemment  question  du  plus  connu  des  essais  de  refutation  des 
theories  de  Buchanan,  le  De  Regno  et  regali  potestate  adversus 
Buchananum,  Brulum,  BoncJieriiim  et  reliquos  mnnarchomachos, 
que  le  jurisconsulte  ecossais  William  Barclay  publia  apres  la 
mort  de  I'auteur  des  Essais.  II  s'agit  probablement  de 
V  Apologia  pro  Eegihus  contra  Buchananum,  oeuvre  du 
theologien  ecossais  Adam  Blackwood.^ 

"  M.  de  Thou — dit  Bayle,  dans  son  article  sur  Buchanan — 
nous  apprend  (Thuanus,  De  Vita  sua,  lib.  II.,  ad  annum  1582) 
que,  tous  les  ans,  Elie  Vinet  recevoit  des  Lettres  de  Buchanan 
par  les  marchands  Ecossois  qui  venoient  charger  du  vin  a 
Bordeaux.  Vinet  montra  ces  Lettres  a  M.  de  Thou."  De 
I'abondante  correspondance  echangee  pendant  de  longues  annees 
entre  les  deux  amis,  nous  ne  connaissons  que  trois  lettres,  une 
de  Buchanan,  deux  d'Elie  Vinet,  datees  toutes  les  trois  de  1581.' 

^  Epistolce,  xxvi.  {Buchanani  Opera  omnia,  <5dit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  751). 

^Blackwood  naquit  h,  Dunfermline  en  15.39  et  mourut  en  1613.  Ses 
oeuvres  completes  n'ont  kt&  editfees  qu'en  1644,  ii  Paris,  par  les  soins  de  Naudi^. 
Mais  \' Apologia,  qui  avait  suivi  de  prfes  le  De  Jure  Regni,  6tait  evidemment 
publi^e  avant  le  troisiime  livre  des  Esuais,  qui  se  trouve  pour  la  premic^re 
fois  dans  I'^dition  de  Montaigne  de  1558.  Dans  une  de  sea  lettres,  Vinet 
(5crivait  a  Buchanan,  le  9  juin  1581,  qu'un  conseiller  de  Poitiers  se  piV>- 
parait  k  publier  une  riSfutation  du  De  Jure  Regni.  Apr6s  avoir  ^tudi6,  puis 
ensoigniS  la  philoaophie  k  Paris,  Adam  Blackwood  <Jtait,  en  1581,  conseiller  au 
pr6sidial  de  Poitiers.  Ruddiman  (fedit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  767)  dit  que 
VApologia  pro  liegibuK  fut  publiiSe  k  Poitiers,  on  1581.  La  Pnrfatio  de 
IVidition  do  1725  des  Opera  omnia  de  Buchanan  cite  bejiucoup  do  "liures 
Escossois"  composi!'S  pour  r(5futer  le  De  Jure  Rigni.  "tot  libros  a  Blac- 
vodajo,  Winzoto,  Barolaio,  Turnoro,  G.  Burnotio,  opisoopo  Sarisburionsi,  D. 
Mackonzteo,  aliiaque  popularibus  suis  adversus  ouni  Dialoguni  consuriptos." 
La  plupart  d'ontro  oux  sont  poatiSriours  k  la  publication  du  troiaicime  livre 
doa  Wstiaiti, 

'  Kpiatolir,  xxxvii.,  xxxviii.,  xl.  (Huchanani  Opera  omnia,  6d\t.  de  172,'i,  t. 
II.,  p.  7(i5,  766,  768). — (iauUiour,  qui  fait  alhiaion  k  la  It-ltrc  xxxvii.  {Ifinf.  du 
Vol/i)j;e  de  Ouyeune,  p.  .'!61),  (lit,  Ji  tort,  cin'cUo  fnt  I'crite  en  1582. 


George  Buchanan  k  Bordeaux  61 

Mais  I'histoire  du  College  de  Guyenne  pendant  que  Vinet 
en  etait  le  principal  permet  de  comprendre  quelle  action 
Buchanan  exercait  sur  les  progres  de  cette  Schola  Aquitanica 
dont  il  avaifc  ete  I'un  des  regents  et  aux  succes  de  laquelle  son 
affection  pour  Vinet  I'interessait  non  moins  que  ses  souvenirs  de 
jeunesse. 

II  semble,  en  effet,  que  vers  1570  le  College  de  Guyenne 
comptait  plusieura  ecoliers  venus  d'Ecosse.  La  plupart  des 
documents  relatifs  au  College  ayant  ete  detruits  dans  I'incendie 
des  Archives  municipales,  le  13  juin  1862,  nous  n'avons  aucune 
indication  precise  a  ce  sujet.  Mais,  dans  les  actes  de  notaires 
conserves  aux  Archives  departementales,  on  trouve  les  noms 
de  divers  "  escolliers  escossoys  d' Aberdeen."  L'un  d'eux, 
Guillaume  Fergusson,  prete  de  I'argent  a  un  marchand  de 
Bordeaux.  Certains  commer9ants  d' Aberdeen,  les  Brown,  les 
Oulson,  ont  place  leurs  fils  a  la  Schola  Aquitanica.^  II  est 
probable  que  Buchanan,  dont  I'influence  etait  grande  en  Ecosse, 
conseillait  a  ceux  de  ses  compatriotes  que  leurs  affaires 
appelaient  en  France  de  mettre  leurs  enfants  dans  una  maison 
dirigee  par  un  homme  dont  il  se  plaisait  a  recommander  le 
savoir  et  I'honnetete.  C'est  au  College  de  Guyenne  que  Ton 
envoyait  d' Aberdeen  ou  de  Glascow  les  jeunes  gens  destines  au 
negoce,  qui  pouvaient  se  creer  a  Bordeaux  d'utiles  relations 
commerciales.  Certains  meme  n'attendaient  pas  d'avoir  quitte 
les  bancs  de  I'ecole  pour  s'occuper  d'affaires :  tel  ce  Guillaume 
Fergusson,  "  escollier  escossoys,"  qui  prete  de  I'argent  a  un 
marchand  de  Bordeaux  par  acte  notarie  en  date  du  16  aout  1568. 

Vinet  est,  en  quelque  sorte,  a  Bordeaux,  le  charge  d'affaires 
et  I'homme  de  confiance  des  compatriotes  de  Buchanan.  Le 
pere  de  Guillaume  Fergusson  lui  donne,  en  1573,  la  mission 
d'operer  pour  lui  le  recouvrement  de  creances  importantes  sur 
des  marchands  bordelais.  Le  vieil  erudit,  malgre  son  extreme 
bonte,  juge  que  I'on  abuse  un  peu  de  sa  complaisance ;  et  il 
repond  "  qu'il  ne  peut  vacquer  a  la  dite  charge,  tant  a  cause 
de  la  malladye  en  laquelle  il  est  detenu  que  aussi  a  cause  que 
la  dite  charge  ne  luy  estoit  convenable  a  cause  de  son  estat  de 
regent^  au  dit  College  de  Guyenne,  et  autres  considerations."^ 

1  GaulUenr,  Histoire  du  ColUge  de  Quyenne,  p.  284. 

2  Dte  1570,  absorb^  par  la  preparation  de  son  Gommentain  sur  Ausone, 
Vinet  avait  obtenu  d'etre  releviS  de  ses  fonotions  de  principal ;  il  n'^tait  plus 
officiellement  que  regent. 

*  GaulUeur,  Histoire  du  ColUge  de  Ouyenne,  p.  349. 


52  George  Buchanan  a  Bordeaux 

C'est  un  compatriote  de  Fergusson,  Andre  MacRedor,  qui 
se  chargea  de  recouvrer  les  creances.  Ce  personnage,  que  lea 
actes  nomment  Macrodor,  Macredor  ou  Macliredor,  etait  maitre 
es  arts  et  licencie  en  droit.  Apres  avoir  fait  ses  etudes  a  Tecole 
de  medecine  de  Bordeaux,  qui  prenait  une  grande  importance, 
il  s'etablit  dans  notre  ville  ou  il  parvint  a  une  position  oflBcielle. 
Le  Registre  de  la  Comptablie  royale  de  Bordeaun,  annee  1593, 
enregistre  un  paiement  fait  a  "  Maitre  Andre  Macredor, 
docteur  en  medecine  et  medecin  ordinaire  de  la  Geollerye  de 
Guyenne."'  A  la  fin  du  xvi''  siecle,  une  petite  colonie  ecossaise 
prosperait  a  Bordeaux. 

L'Universite  de  Bordeaux  ne  doit  pas  oublier  que  la 
reputation  legitime  dont  jouit  le  College  de  Guyenne  en  France 
et  a  I'etranger,  pendant  prea  d'un  siecle,  de  1534  a  1627,  est 
due  en  grande  partie  aux  professeurs  ecossais  qui  avaient  ete 
attires  dans  notre  ville  par  I'exemple  et  souvent  par  les  conseils 
de  George  Buchanan. 

H.   DE  LA  V.   DE  M. 

'  GauUieur,  Histoire  du  GolUge  de  Ouyenne,  p.  351,  n.  2. 


VI. 
Buchanan  and  the   Franciscans. 

"  Who  will  give  me  before  I  die  to  see  the  Church  as  it  was  in  the 
ancient  days,  when  the  apostles  cast  their  nets  to  catch  souls,  not 
silver  and  gold  1 " — these  were  the  words  of  Bernard  of  Clairvaux 
in  his  eagerness  for  a  purified  Church.  In  the  century  after  Ber- 
nard, who,  though  a  monk,  was  also  an  ecclesiastic,  there  came  in 
Francis  of  Assisi,  one  who  cared  more  for  Christ  than  for  the  Church, 
and  more  for  obedience  to  His  words  than  for  the  keeping  of  all  the 
commandments  of  Rome.  Francis  made  the  supreme  renunciation 
of  the  world,  having  not  even  where  to  lay  his  head  ;  and  from  the 
sacred  era  of  the  Incarnation,  when  Jesus  walked  in  Galilee  and 
suffered  in  Jerusalem,  to  the  opening  years  of  the  thirteenth  century, 
none  more  than  Francis  tried  to  be  like  unto  his  Lord,  and  to  be  as 
the  Christ  made  ilesh  again. 

In  the  Mendicant  Revival  led  by  Francis  there  was  no  policy 
to  change  papal  Rome,  and  no  scheme  to  reform  the  doctrine  and 
ritual  of  the  Church  ;  but  men  and  women  were  to  be  brought  into 
the  presence  of  Christ  and  made  better.  Friars  went  forth  from 
Assisi  to  preach  the  gospel  as  it  came  from  the  lips  of  Christ,  and 
to  lead  the  life  which  He  had  consecrated  ;  but  before  the  tale  of 
many  years  was  told,  the  professed  followers  of  the  Saint,  in  at  least 
one  of  the  sections  of  the  Order,  fell  away  from  his  simplicity. 
Again  and  again,  however,  in  the  history  of  the  Franciscans  re- 
formers rising  in  their  midst  sought  to  go  back  to  that  simplicity 
and  to  restore  the  primitive  grace  which  adorned  the  first  Poor  Men 
of  Assisi.  In  the  fifteenth  century  the  Observants  by  their  founda 
tion  witnessed  to  the  search  for  a  lost  ideal ;  and  friars  of  their 
reformation  were  settled  iti  Edinburgh,  while  others  were  established 
in  St.  Andrews  by  Bishop  Kennedy,  the  founder  of  the  College  and 
Church  of  the  Holy  Saviour,  and  were  enriched  by  Patrick  Graham, 
the  first  Archbishop  in  the  Scottish  Church.  The  history  of  the 
Franciscans,  indeed,  bears  record  of  reforms  within  the  Order ;  yet 


54  Buchanan  and  the  Franciscans 

the  age  of  the  Renascence  witnessed  Erasmus  lashing  the  vices  of 
mendicants  and  monks,  and  mocking  their  ignorance  and  idleness, 
as  the  age  of  the  Reformation  saw  Buchanan  exposing  their  folly 
and  hypocrisy. 

Buchanan,  where  there  was  a  straight  road  to  trouble,  knew  how 
to  find  it.  During  a  residence  in  Scotland  with  Lord  Cassilis,  after 
a  sojourn  at  one  of  the  Colleges  of  Paris,  ho  adapted  or  imitated 
Dunbar's  poem  with  the  title,  llow  Dunbar  was  dcs/jrit  Uj  he  am 
Fryer  ;  and  giving  it  a  Latin  dress  sent  it  forth  under  the  name  of 
Somnium.  Dunbar  had  been  a  Franciscan,  but  had  thrown  off  the 
habit  of  the  Order  before  attacking  the  Brothers  Minor.  While  he 
did  not  enlist  in  the  noble  army  of  the  martyrs,  he  encountered  danger 
by  his  scorn  of  hypocrites  and  his  hatred  of  the  tricks  and  frauds 
of  the  religious  life.  His  poems  and  satires  were  written  in  the 
most  excellent  Scottish  tongue  of  his  day  ;  but  fierce  though  his 
attack  on  the  friars  was,  it  wrought  little  harm  to  them  or  to  the 
Church,  for  the  day  of  the  Reformation  in  Scotland  was  not  yet. 
When,  however,  Buchanan  wrote,  the  Scottish  Reformation  was  not 
far  off;  and  those  in  Scotland  who  bore  St.  Francis'  name  knew 
that  in  other  lands  the  sins  of  the  Brothers  had  found  them  out. 
The  Latin  form  of  the  poem,  on  the  other  hand,  appealed  to  the 
world  beyond  Scotland,  and  the  pride  of  the  Order  was  lost. 

The  Somnium  delighted  at  least  one  reader,  and  that  man  was 
the  King  of  Scotland.  James  V.  hated  the  Franciscans,  thinking 
they  had  devised  plots  against  him,  and  was  ready  to  welcome  the 
enemy  of  his  enemies.  Moved  by  royal  persuasion  or  commanded 
by  royal  authority,  Buchanan  returned  to  the  attack  of  the  men 
whose  poverty  was  a  pretence  and  whose  humility  was  but  hypocrisy. 
The  two  poems,  each  styled  Palinodia,  are  literary  enigmas.  He 
wished  to  serve  his  king,  and  yet  not  further  to  provoke  the 
Franciscans.  It  may  be  that  the  poems  as  we  have  them  are  not  in 
their  first  forms,  or  it  may  be  that  he  attributed  to  the  friars  an 
ignorance  passing  the  ignorance  of  even  the  monks  and  priests,  and 
counted  that  his  words  would  not  be  understood.  Yet  to  the  insult 
of  the  Somnium  ho  added  the  injuries  of  the  Pidinodia. 

The  Franciscans  were  angry,  and  yet  James  was  not  satisfied 
with  the  measure  of  their  wrath.  His  word  to  the  poet  was  that 
he  should  prepare  something  "  whicli  should  not  only  prick  the  skin, 
but  probe  the  vitals."  Impelled  once  more  to  the  attack,  Buchanan 
wrote  Franciacanus,  the    most  skilfully  constructed  of  his  poems 


Buchanan  and  the  Franciscans  56 

and  the  fiercest  of  his  satires.  Wit,  humour,  raillery,  banter, 
sarcasm,  irony  were  each  pressed  into  the  service  of  the  satirist. 
The  vices  of  the  spiritual  criminals  were  recounted,  and  their  base- 
ness exposed. 

But  what  of  the  weapon  used  in  the  attack  ?  Should  the  sword 
or  rapier  of  satire  have  been  used  in  the  battle  of  religion  ?  There 
is  a  nice  ethical  and  also  an  aesthetic  question  regarding  the  right 
of  coarseness  to  iind  a  place  in  satire.  When  men  and  their 
manners  are  coarse  are  they  to  be  painted  with  realistic  details  1 
Realism  of  this  fashion  will,  indeed,  do  no  hurt  to  those  who  for 
their  bad  habits  must  be  thrashed,  but  none  the  less  the  satirist 
may  be  dealing  in  filthy  communications  which  corrupt  the  good 
manners  of  innooency  and  shock  the  prejudices  of  respectability. 
History,  however,  must  know  how  to  be  tolerant  in  its  judgments, 
and  must  not  charge  with  indecency  and  condemn  as  injurious  to 
the  public  welfare  satires  which  in  their  own  day  and  generation 
did  not  violate  refinement.  Buchanan,  with  his  pictures  of  the 
Franciscans,  which  in  the  twentieth  century  might  perhaps  have 
dragged  him  before  the  bar  of  a  police  court,  offended  the  taste  of 
none  with  wit  to  understand  his  Latin  ;  and  history  on  its  judg- 
ment seat  may  dismiss  him  without  a  stain  on  his  character. 

Buchanan  used  satire  and  used  it  with  brilliant  literary  eiFect. 
Was  he  justified,  since,  by  attacking  an  Order  established  within 
the  Church,  he  was  really  fighting  an  holy  war  t  It  is  urged  that 
he  himself,  when  he  wrote  his  poems  against  the  friars,  was  not 
consumed  with  zeal  for  religion.  None  the  less  he  was  doing  battle 
for  the  things  which  belong  to  religion,  and  the  question  of  his  use 
of  satire  remains.  As  an  humanist  he  knew  the  attacks  on  men 
and  manners  made  by  the  satirists  of  the  Roman  world,  whose 
«  words  were  enshrined  in  the  literature  which  appeared  to  the 
scholars  of  the  fifteenth  and  sixteenth  centuries  as  the  scripture 
of  a  new  revelation  ;  and  a  son  of  the  Renascence  Buchanan, 
fascinated  by  the  Latin  satirists,  followed  their  methods  of  attack, 
even  within  the  province  of  religion  which  they  could  not  have 
entered.  He  was  but  a  boy  when  the  Epistolae  Obscurorum  Virorum 
were  published  ;  and,  precocious  though  he  was  in  his  youth,  there 
is  no  incredible  tale  of  his  enjoyment  of  their  fun.  The  cleverness 
and  wit,  however,  of  these  letters,  which  aided  the  enfranchisement 
of  learning,  and  helped  to  prepare  the  way  of  the  New  Faith  in 
Germany,  were  more  than  the  joke  and  humour  of  an  idle  day,  and 


56  Buchanan  and  the  Franciscans 

he  Haw  in  their  effects  the  uses  to  which  satire  could  be  put. 
Erasmus,  in  the  age  before  the  spiritual  passion  of  Luther  trans- 
formed the  German  Church,  laughed  at  the  folly  and  ridiculed  the 
ignorance  of  priests  and  monks  and  friars,  and  dared  to  blast  the 
memory  even  of  a  pope.  His  attacks  on  the  priestly  multitude  were 
openly  confessed  ;  and  though  he  repudiated  the  Julius  Secundus 
Exclusus,  there  was  no  other  Erasmus  with  cleverness  and  skill  to 
write  it.  The  greatest  of  all  the  humanists,  through  wiiliiigs  read 
by  the  scholars  of  Europe,  had  made  satire  justified  of  her  children  ; 
and  if  Buchanan  required  to  shelter  himself  under  high  authority,  he 
could  point  to  Erasnms  as  a  master  in  satire  who  had  not  spared 
the  most  illustrious  as  well  as  the  meanest  representative  of  the 
Holy  Roman  Church. 

One  thing  the  Franciscans  could  not  do  in  replying  to  Buchanan. 
They  could  not  give  him  the  lie  direct  or  indirect,  and  bid  him  go  to 
the  poor  and  the  outcast  for  a  testimony  of  merciful  service.  In  the 
second  canto  of  Franciscanus  the  poet  had  shown  the  beggar 
standing  at  the  door  of  the  convent,  haggard,  weak,  trembling, 
distressed,  forlorn,  and  wasted  with  grief.  The  suppliant,  diseased 
in  limb,  tells  the  tale  of  his  distress  to  the  comfortable  friar  who 
laughs  at  disease  and  jokes  at  the  ills  of  humanity.  The  friar  who, 
with  a  message  of  divine  love  to  man,  should  make  known  the 
precepts  of  Christ,  who  should  clothe  the  naked  and  feed  the  hungry 
and  succour  the  stranger  and  visit  the  prisoner,  is  deaf  to  the  stories 
of  sorrow  and  spurns  the  pauper  from  his  door,  and  then,  seeking 
the  comfort  of  his  couch  and  placing  the  glass  to  his  lips,  tastes  the 
pleasures  of  the  passing  hour. 

The  Brothers  Minor,  even  the  Oliservants  of  the  Franciscan 
reformation,  could  not  repudiate  the  poet's  verse  as  a  vile  aspersion 
on  the  fair  fame  of  their  Order.  Francis  dying,  prostrated  on  the 
bare  earth  for  the  last  contest  with  the  spiritual  adversary,  but  with 
face  uplifted  to  heaven,  said  to  his  brethren  around  him,  "  I  have 
done  my  part  ;  may  Christ  teach  you  to  do  yours."  The  centuries 
passed  and  the  friars  of  the  last  generations  of  the  medieval  Church 
did  not  do  the  parts  to  which  they  had  boon  consecrated  in  the 
name  of  tlie  Saint.  The  men  wliu  had  taken  that  name  had  fallen 
from  the  higli  estate  in  whioli  their  Ordor  had  Ik^ou  created.  Tliey 
had  become  infidels  to  the  spirit  and  strangers  to  the  kindly 
charities  of  thoir  founder.  Humility  they  had  none,  in  which  to 
take  as  wholesome  lessons  the  rebukes  of  satirists;  and  never  were 


Buchanan  and  the  Franciscans  57 

the  Scottish  friars  further  away  from  the  gentleness  and  meekness 
of  the  Saint  than  they  were  on  the  day  when  they  sought  the  aid  of 
Cardinal  Beaton  to  destroy  their  enemy. 

Fortunately  for  the  cause  of  religious  progress  in  Scotland  there 
was  no  Holy  Office  to  superintend  the  extinction  of  heretics. 
Laurence  of  Lindores,  in  the  beginning  of  the  fifteenth  century, 
had  the  title  and  held  the  office  of  Inquisitor ;  but  the  Inquisition 
as  an  organization  was  not  established  in  Scotland.  Pope  Gregory 
IX.,  in  the  year  1233,  issued  bulls  which  mark  the  foundation  of 
the  Inquisition,  and  one  of  these  bulls  associated  the  Dominicans 
with  the  machinery  for  protecting  the  dogma.  The  two  chief 
Mendicant  Orders  were  ever  jealous  of  each  other,  and  in  1237 
the  privilege  granted  to  the  Dominicans  were  extended  to  the 
Franciscans.  Innocent  IV.,  dividing  the  honours  between  the  two 
companies,  parcelled  out  Italy  as  an  arnea  for  the  Inquisition, 
giving  one  part  to  the  Brothers  Preachers  and  another  to  the 
Brothers  Minor.  Eventually,  however,  the  Preachers  obtained  con- 
trol of  the  holy  office ;  but  neither  of  the  Orders  succeeded  in 
establishing  the  Inquisition  in  Scotland,  where,  consequently,  the 
martyrs  for  the  new  faith  were  few.  Yet  Cardinal  Beaton,  Prince 
of  the  Church,  Legate  a  latere.  Archbishop  of  St.  Andrews,  had 
power  to  remove  disturbers  of  the  spiritual  slumbers  of  priests  or 
monks  or  friars ;  and  Buchanan  would  have  died  like  Patrick 
Hamilton  had  not  the  royal  authority  interposed. 

Tradition  has  been  pitiless  to  the  memory  of  Beaton.  He  was 
the  first  and  he  was  the  last  Scottish  prelate  who  was  elevated  to 
the  rank  of  cardinal,  and  in  an  age  when  Germany  and  England 
were  delivering  tragic  blows,  he  was  commissioned,  as  his  title 
shows,  to  protect  Scotland  from  the  assaults  of  the  enemies  of  the 
Ancient  Faith.  The  old  enmity  between  Scotland  and  England 
was  not  dead  in  the  first  half  of  the  sixteenth  century ;  and  had 
there  been  no  religious  question  at  issue,  the  policy  of  Beaton,  to 
save  his  country  from  English  domination,  would  have  ranked  him 
among  the  patriots  of  his  land.  There  was,  however,  the  supreme 
religious  question ;  and  Beaton,  an  ecclesiastic  with  the  pride  and 
immorality  which  have  marked  and  stained  so  many  of  the  prelates 
of  the  unreformed  Church,  has  been  remembered,  not  as  the  advo- 
cate of  his  country's  political  independence,  but  as  the  upholder  of  a 
Church  that  had  left  undone  many  things  that  make  for  the  welfare 
of  the  people.  The  cardinal  was  a  statesman,  and  neither  religion 
nor  learning  was  his  passion.     Nothing  in  his  history  suggests  that 


58  Buchanan  and  the  Franciscans 

he  could  have  been  concerned  with  the  grievances  of  the  Franciscans 
who  sought  his  aid  against  Buchanan.  What  had  this  prince  of  the 
Church  in  common  with  the  idle  and  useless  mendicants  who  served 
no  cause  of  religion  and  brought  no  distinction  to  the  Church? 
He  did  listen  to  them ;  and  for  the  simple  reason  that  they  were  in 
peril  within  the  Church,  which  was  itself  in  danger,  he  turned  to 
their  help.  For  Buchanan,  on  the  other  hand,  he  cared  nothing. 
There  may  be  pardon  for  the  statesman  who  had  no  leisure  for  the 
Latin  exercises  of  the  Humanists,  in  the  years  when  his  Church  and 
his  country's  freedom  were  assailed ;  and  the  prelate  is  not  to  be 
blamed  who  did  not  turn  from  official  duty  to  save  a  man  of  letters 
who,  to  his  thinking,  was  touching  the  Lord's  anointed.  Pius  II., 
the  Humanist  Pope,  would  have  discussed  with  Buchanan  the  metre 
of  the  Somnium  or  criticized  the  epigrams  of  the  Franciscanus,  and 
would  then  have  sent  him  to  the  stake,  not  for  the  quality  of  his 
Latin  verse,  but  that  the  Holy  Roman  Church  in  any  of  its 
members  might  suffer  no  injury.  Beaton  more  than  probably  had 
not  the  skill  to  read  and  the  wit  to  enjoy  the  Latin  of  Buchanan. 
He  had,  however,  the  eye  to  see  in  the  poet  an  enemy  of  established 
order  and  a  disturber  of  the  things  which  ought  not  to  be  shaken. 

The  Franciscans  apjiealed  to  Beaton ;  and  Beaton  turned  to  the 
king  for  the  authority  which  would  enable  him  to  seize  Buchanan, 
and  add  him  to  the  number  of  the  Church's  victims.  As  the 
cardinal  was  forced  to  seek  the  royal  permission,  it  is  evident  that 
the  poet  was  under  protection,  and  that  Rome's  representative,  who 
after  the  fashion  of  his  kind  was  not  wont  to  let  the  secular  left 
arm  know  what  the  spiritual  right  arm  was  doing,  was  loath  to 
thwart  a  king  who  might  at  any  hour  declare  for  the  new  Faith. 
The  later  Stewart  kings  had  persistently  curbed  the  Papal  power  in 
Scotland,  grasping  for  the  Crown  the  patronage  of  abuses  which 
had  enriched  the  treasury  in  Rome ;  and  James  V.  was  favouring 
Sir  David  Lindsay  with  his  Satire  of  the  Three  Estates,  and  had 
incited  Buchanan  to  attack  the  friars.  Beaton  knew,  indeed,  that 
if  James  followed  the  example  of  Henry  VIII.,  and  defended  a 
Faith  repudiated  by  the  pope,  the  cause  of  Rome  was  lost  in 
Scotland.  The  king,  on  the  other  hand,  who,  unless  he  separated 
from  the  Ancient  Church,  could  not  opouty  defy  the  cardinal's 
request,  liad  no  mind  to  deliv(>r  the  poet  into  the  merciless  hands  of 
the  prelates.  Ho  accordingly  devised  the  excellent  plan  of  laying 
hold  of  Buchanan  and  committing  him  to  a  prison,  in  which  the 
door  or  the  window  was  defective  as  the  door  or  the  window  of  a 


Buchanan  and  the  Franciscans  59 

house  of  detention.  Buchanan,  in  the  consciousness  of  innocency  or 
the  pride  of  offended  dignity,  made  no  protest  about  unmerited 
punishment  or  illegal  incarceration.  Like  a  wise  man  he  girt  up 
his  loins,  and  fled  by  the  way  the  royal  providence  had  opened  for 
him.  When  well  away  he  was  pursued  by  the  king's  servants,  and 
was  not  taken. 

Wandering  to  England  and  then  to  France  Buchanan  reached 
Paris,  where  he  learned  that  Cardinal  Beaton  was  in  the  city.  As 
Beaton  was  not  the  prelate  to  forget  or  forgive,  prudence  induced 
Buchanan  to  leave  Paris  and  to  accept  the  offer  of  a  professorship  in 
the  college  at  Bordeaux.  He  went  to  Bordeaux  and  remained  in 
the  college  for  three  years,  and  then,  writing  a  poem  on  the  enforced 
entrance  of  girls  into  nunneries,  he  found  himself  in  trouble  with 
his  ecclesiastical  masters.  Beaton  was  still  living  and  was  powerful 
in  Scotland,  and  the  fugitive  from  the  Church's  discipline  could  not 
return  to  his  own  land.  In  course  of  time  another  professorship 
was  offered  to  him,  and  he  taught  for  a  short  period  in  Coimbra  in 
Portugal.  He  and  his  colleagues,  however,  came  under  suspicion  of 
heresy,  and  the  Jesuits,  who  obtained  control  of  the  university, 
handed  him  over  to  the  Inquisition.  Charges  were  preferred  which, 
if  proved,  were  sufficient  to  condemn  him  to  death,  and  among  these 
was  the  accusation  that  he  had  written  against  the  Franciscans. 
This  accusation  he  could  not  deny,  though  he  was  able  to  satisfy  his 
judges  that  he  was  not  guilty  of  the  spiritual  crimes  alleged  against 
him.  He  was  not  able,  however,  to  convince  them  that  it  was  safe 
to  leave  him  without  special  aid  in  his  religious  life ;  and  he  was 
accordingly  sent  to  a  monastery,  where  he  might  obtain  instruction 
in  theology. 

After  passing  from  the  keeping  of  the  monks  Buchanan  paid 
special  heed  to  the  Bible,  and  a  study  of  the  sacred  Book  trans- 
formed him  into  a  Protestant.  As  a  Protestant  he  returned  to 
Scotland  in  1561,  where  the  policy  of  Beaton  was  frustrated,  where 
the  ancient  Church  was  in  ruins,  and  where  the  Franciscan  friars 
were  no  longer  begging  for  bread  they  did  not  desire  or  for  alms 
they  did  not  deserve. 

J.  H. 


VII. 

Buchanan  in  Portugal. 

In  all  the  biographies  of  this  celebrated  Humanist  and 
Reformer,  down  to  and  including  the  one  written  by  Professor 
Hume  Brown — George  Buchanan,  a  Biography,  Edinbiirgh 
1890 — there  is  a  period  of  five  years  about  which  very  little  is 
said,  because  very  little  was  known  of  it.  It  is  stated  that  the 
beginning  of  the  year  1547  found  him  living  in  France, 
supporting  himself  by  teaching,  and  that  proposals  were  then 
made  to  him  to  go  to  Portugal  as  Professor  in  a  new  scholastic 
establishment,  called  the  '  Real  Collegio  das  Artes,'  which  had 
been  recently  founded  by  the  King  of  that  country,  Dom 
John  III.,  at  the  university  city  of  Coimbra.  He  accepted 
the  offer  and  is  supposed  to  have  started  for  Portugal  in 
March  1547. 

The  only  source  of  information  which  his  biographers 
possessed  as  to  what  took  place  while  he  resided  in  Portugal 
was  about  one  page  octavo  of  a  short  autobiographical  sketch 
in  Latin,  supposed  to  have  been  written  by  him  shortly  before 
his  death,  evidently  in  1580.^  In  this  sketch  it  is  stated  briefly 
that  he  was  imprisoned  in  the  Lisbon  Inquisiton  for  a  year 
and  a  half,  and  then  detained  in  a  monastery  for  some  months, 
so  that  he  might  be  more  accurately  instructed  by  the  monks 
who  did  not  prove  to  be  unkind,  though  they  were  utterly 
ignorant  of  religious  truth.  It  was  mainly  at  this  time  that 
he  translated  the  Psalms  into  various  measures.  After  his 
restoration  to  liberty,  he  asked  permission  to  return  to  France ; 
but  Dom  John  III.  requested  him  to  remain,  and  supplied  him 
with  means  sufficient  for  his  daily  wants.  Becoming  sick  of 
delays  and  of  uncertain  hopes,  he  embarked  in  a  Cretan  ship 
at  Lisbon,  and  sailed  for  England. 

'  Sir  Thomas  Randolphe's  lottor  to  Sir  Peter  Yomig  in  1579  was, 
aooordini;;  to  RuJiliinan,  the  oauso  that  {jruniptod  Buohautui  to  write  this 
account  of  his  own  life. 


O 
< 


o- 


Buchanan  in  Portugal  61 

The  scantiness  of  these  details  is  explainable  in  two  ways : 
first,  that  owing  to  the  secrecy  with  which  the  Holy  Office 
surrounded  its  proceedings  Buchanan  himself  knew  but  little 
of  the  causes  of  his  imprisonment,  and,  secondly,  that  old  age 
and  his  experience  of  the  power  of  that  dread  Tribunal  may 
have  led  him  to  speak  with  prudent  brevity  of  its  treatment  of 
him. 

In  one  thing  he  seems  to  have  been  mistaken,  and  that  was 
in  attributing  to  Joannes  Ferrerius'  and  Joannes  Tolpinus,^  as 
he  does  in  the  said  sketch,  any  active  part  in  his  misfortunes. 
Their  testimony  against  him  was  comparatively  unimportant.'' 

For  some  three  hundred  years  Buchanan's  experiences  of 
Portugal  and  its  Inquisition  remained  buried  in  the  Archives 
of  the  Holy  Office,  together  with  those  of  many  others  of  equal 
or  less  importance.  It  is  strange  that  those  Archives  should 
have  been  preserved  for  so  long  a  period  in  spite  of  the 
ravages  of  time  and  of  such  a  terrible  catastrophe  as  the  great 
Earthquake  of  1755;  but  they  were  so,  and  when  the 
establishment  of  constitutional  liberty  brought  about  the 
extinction  of  the  Inquisition,  the  secrets  were  laid  bare,  and 
some  36,000  records  of  the  proceedings  against  the  unfortunate 
victims  were  taken  to  the  National  Archives,  where  they  have 
been  inventoried  and  preserved,  and  some  of  the  important  ones 
have  been  published  in  a  more  or  less  complete  form. 

A  short  time  before  the  publication  of  Professor  Hume 
Brown's  biography  of  Buchanan,  while  I  was  examining  the 
records  of  the  proceedings  against  Damian  de  Goes,  Father 
Gabriel  de  Malagrida,  and  other  victims  of  the  pitiless 
Tribunal,  I  came  across  the  Records  of  George  Buchanan's 
trial  and  caused  a  copy  to  be  made  of  them,  without  having 
any  definite  object  in  view.  Hearing  that  the  Biografhy  had 
been  published,  I  called  the  attention  of  its  talented  author  to 
the  fact  of  their  existence,  and  forwarded  to  him  a  translation 
of  them  which  supplied  the  material  for  an  article  published 
by  him  in  the  Scottish  Review,  No.  xlii.,  April  1893. 

Since  then  the  sentence  passed  upon  Buchanan  has  appeared 

'Ferrerius  was  a  native  of  Liguria  and  had  at  one  time  visited  Scotland. 
He  was  connected  with  the  monastery  of  Kinloss,  and  was  well-known  as  the 
author  of  many  books. — Dr.  Irving's  Memoirs,  Page  72. 

^  "  Talpin  was  a  native  of  Normandy,  and  is  the  author  of  various  works 
in  the  French  language." — Irving's  Memoirs,  page  72. 

^  See  Appendix  I.  (a) — footnotes. 


62  Buchanan  in  Portugal 

in  a  Portuguese  work,  Documentos  para  a  Historia  dos  Jesuitas 
em  Portuf/cil,  Coimbra  1899,  by  Dr.  Antonio  Jose  Teixeira; 
and  the  entire  Records  have  been  published  in  the  monthly 
magazine  0  Archivo  Tlistoricn,  owned  and  edited  by  Senhor 
Anselmo  Braamcamp  Freire  who,  for  many  years,  has  devoted 
his  talent  and  fortune  to  the  publication  of  the  documents  of 
historical  interest  which,  almost  unknown,  abound  in  the 
Archives  of  his  country. 

At  the  time  when  I  first  drew  the  attention  of  Professor 
Hume  Brown  to  the  proceedings  against  Buchanan  in  the 
Inquisition,  the  Records  struck  me  as  being  incomplete,  for, 
although  they  commenced  with  the  delivery  of  the  prisoner  in 
the  Prison  of  the  Holy  Office,  there  was  no  order  for  his 
capture  or  any  ground  for  the  proceedings.  In  other  Records, 
the  proceedings  are  based  upon  a  species  of  "  finding  of  a  true 
Bill  "  against  the  culprit,  such  finding  being  the  consequence 
of  an  information  more  or  less  secretly  given  against  him  by 
some  one  and  preliminary  testimony  taken  thereon. 

Further  investigation  shewed  me  that,  simultaneously  with 
Buchanan,  the  Principal  of  the  College  at  Coimbra,  Joam  da 
Costa,  and  another  of  its  Professors — Diogo  (or  Jacobus)  de 
Teive,  had  also  been  tried  by  the  Inquisition  with  precisely 
similar  results.  An  examination  of  the  proceedings  against 
these  prisoners  supplied  the  missing  documents  and  many 
interesting  details. 

Commencing  with  Buchanan's  departure  from  France,  we 
learn  that  it  was  in  consequence  of  the  high  terms  in  which 
Friar  Jeronymo  de  Padilha  and  Friar  Jorge  de  Santiago  spoke 
to  the  King  of  Portugal  of  the  College  at  Bordeaux,  upon  their 
return  from  a  visit  there,  that  His  Majesty  resolved  to  send  for 
the  Professors.  They  came  from  Bordeaux  to  Portugal,  by 
land,  in  two  groups.  The  first  was  composed  of  the  four 
foreigners — Masters  Nicolas  Gruchy,  Guillaume  Garante,'  George 
Buchanan,  and  Fabricius  ;  the  second  consisted  of  Cost-a,  Teive, 
Elias  Vinetus,  and  Antonio  Mendes. 

They  appear  to  have  rested  a  short  time  at  Salamanca,  and 
there  was  committed  one  of  the  most  important  of  the  offences 
with  which  Buchanan  was  charged  :  he  and  his  fellow  travellers 
ate  moat  upon  certain  days  of  abstinence,   their  excuse  being 

'  T'lofimmir  numo  Brnwn  gives  Clic  ii.anio  as  "Guilltiume  Guirente," 
wliilHt  1!u<  liannii  in  Viln  Sun  [jivoa  "(iiiliylmus  (larontaliis." 


Buchanan  in  Portugal  63 

that  they  were  all  more  or  less  suffering  internally,  and  that  the 
Spanish  bread  disagreed  with  them.  Upon  arriving  in 
Portugal  they  went  first  to  Almeirim,  a  town  some  forty-seven 
miles  to  the  north-east  of  Lisbon,  where  the  Court  was  then 
staying ;  and  from  thence  we  may  presume  that  the  Professors 
went  to  the  College  at  Coimbra  where  Buchanan  appears  to 
have  boarded  with  the  Principal  Costa — if  he  did  not  actually 
live  under  the  same  roof. 

As  regards  the  period  of  his  residence  at  Coimbra  it  is  worthy 
of  note  that  in  no  part  of  the  Records  do  we  read  the 
slightest  insinuation  against  Buchanan's  secular  character.  No 
one  accused  him  of  immorality,  turbulence,  or  any  other  of  the 
vices  which,  it  is  plain,  were  prevalent  among  the  Professors. 
He  was  only  accused  of  a  leaning  towards  the  doctrines  of 
Luther,  and  of  the  disobedience  to  the  Church  of  Rome  which 
was  the  consequence  of  that  tendency. 

It  is  most  pleasing  to  be  able  to  assert  this  when  we  consider 
the  nature  of  his  surroundings.  Very  interesting  details  of  the 
habits,  customs  and  morality, — both  of  the  regents  and  the 
students — at  the  Scots  College  and  Sainte  Barbe  have  been  given  ; 
but  the  state  of  affairs  at  Coimbra  was,  in  some  respects,  worse. 

Buchanan  said  nothing  against  any  one  in  his  defence,  but 
his  fellow  prisoners,  Costa  and  Teive,  were  not  sparing  of  their 
denunciations  against  every  one  to  whom,  rightly  or  wrongly, 
they  attributed  their  imprisonment ;  and  from  the  Records  of 
their  trials  we  glean  the  following  information. 

Buchanan,  it  appears,  was  succeeded  in  the  First  Class  at 
Bordeaux,  which  was  the  highest,  by  one  Langlois,  a 
Frenchman.  Costa  states  that  he  turned  him  out  "  because 
the  students  were  not  satisfied  with  him,  and  because  he  did 
not  deserve  that  Class.  And  because  Master  Diogo  de  Teive 
was  put  in  his  place  and  a  brother  of  mine  was  a  pupil  of  that 
Class,  this  Professor  said  that  I,  together  with  Teive,  and  by 
means  of  my  said  brother,  turned  the  students  against  him 
and  made  them  discontented,  so  that  I  might  have  an  excuse 
for  discharging  him  and  putting  Teive  in  his  place.  He  had  a 
law-suit  with  me,  and  said  a  thousand  bad  things  of  me." 

Of  Professor  Dr.  Eusebio,  Costa  says  that  he  turned  him  out 
of  the  College  at  Coimbra  because  he  was  addicted  to  evil 
practices ;  and  a  youth  named  Brandao,  a  brother  of  the  wife  of 
Balthazar    de    Paria    (who    was,     at    that    time,     Portuguese 


64  Buchanan  in  Portugal 

Ambassador  at  Rome),  and  who  boarded  and  lodged  with 
Eusebio,  had  found  it  necessary  to  quit  the  house  and  go  to 
live  with  a  relation  in  Coimbra.  Eventually  he  entered  the 
Jesuits'  College.  Costa  alleges  that,  upon  hearing  of  this,  he 
severely  reprimanded  Eusebio  and  discharged  him.  The  latter 
was  again  accused  of  a  similar  crime,  and  was  summoned  before 
the  ecclesiastical  authorities. 

Manoel  de  Mesquita,  the  Chaplain  of  the  Royal  College,  was 
said  by  the  Principal  to  be  "a  perfect  plague,  as  all  in 
Coimbra  know." 

Another  Professor,  Master  Belchior  Beliagoa,  was  given 
to  falsehoods.  At  Paris  he  had  acquired  the  nick-name  of 
"  Maquignon  " — the  horse  dealer.  Costa  had  taken  from  his 
house  and  care  the  Duke  de  Aveiro's  son  who  boarded  with 
him,  and  had  reprimanded  him  for  taking  the  students  out  of 
bounds  without  the  permission  of  the  Principal,  which  he  was 
bound  by  the  King's  Regulations  to  obtain.  This  Beliagoa  had 
spread  a  rumour  in  Coimbra,  that  the  French  Professors  who 
had  left  that  city  to  return  to  France  went  straight  on  to 
Geneva.  The  report  reached  the  King's  ears,  and  when  His 
Majesty  appointed  Costa  to  be  Principal,  he  asked  him  how  far 
it  was  true.  Costa  denied  that  this  had  happened, — and,  in 
truth,  it  had  not.  Beliagoa  then  told  people  that  the  said 
French  Professors  had  written  to  the  King,  denouncing  Diogo 
de  Gouvea,  and  had  so  brought  about  the  dismissal  of  the  aged 
Professor, — which  was  also  false.  In  short,  Beliagoa  was 
so  utterly  bad,  that  he  was  known  in  Coimbra  by  the  nick-name 
of  "  Belial." 

Jorge  de  Sa,  another  Professor  at  the  College,  when  teaching 
his  Class,  carried  a  sword  under  his  gown,  telling  people  that 
it  was  for  the  purpose  of  murdering  the  Principal. 
Master  Antonio  Calado  was  known  at  Coimbra  by  a  nick- 
name, the  translation  of  which  is  "  Mouth  of  Hell." 
Alvaro  Lobato,  a  Dominician,  who  lectured  on  Cato  to  the 
students,  had  been  reprimanded  several  times  by  Principal 
Costa  on  account  of  improper  conduct  and  because  he  used  to 
buy  the  scholars'  clothes  which  they  sold  to  him  in  order  to 
obtain  money  for  gambling  and  other  forms  of  vice.  He  was 
thoir  Father  Confessor. 

Both  Principal  Ooata  and  Dingo  do  Toivo  hnd  fought  duels 
in  their  time. 


Buchanan  in  Portugal  65 

Teive  accuses  a  certain  Manoel  de  Araujo,  who  appears  to 
have  been  connected  with  the  College,  of  stealing  a  sword  and 
its  hangings  from  him,  and  goes  on  to  say  that  under  the 
pretext  of  calling  to  see  Master  George  and  himself,  Araujo  was 
endeavouring  to  seduce  a  visitor  of  theirs,  the  daughter  of  a 
Scotsman  and  a  relation  of  Buchanan.  One  day  he  left  in 
her  hands  a  purse  containing  ten  cruzados,  and  withdrew. 
She  complained  to  her  husband  whose  name  was  Robert 
Granjoun,  and  he  spoke  to  Teive  and  Buchanan  about  it. 
Teive  also  accused  Master  Jean  Talpin,  Antoine  Langlois,  and 
Antoine  Leclerc  of  being  seditious  and  bad,  and  for  that  reason 
they  were  expelled.  "  I  fought  with  them  many  times," 
naively  adds  Master  Diogo  de  Teive. 

Marcial  de  Gouvea,  another  teacher,  went  repeatedly  to  the 
Class-rooms,  sword  in  hand,  to  prevent  Costa  and  Teive  from 
teaching.  A  similar  course  was  taken  by  Diogo  de  Gouvea,  the 
Elder,  to  obstruct  his  nephew  Andre  (then  Principal)  and  his 
friend  Costa  in  the  teaching  of  their  Classes. 

These  were  the  persons  with  whom  Buchanan  was  in  contact, 
and  whose  enmity  he  was  most  liable  to  incur.  According  to 
Teive,  the  professors,  who  had  originally  taught  Humanities  at 
Coimbra  before  the  new  men  came,  were  furious  at  their 
coming  and  at  their  being  so  well  treated  by  the  King  who 
allowed  them  mules  as  well  as  servants,  and  gave  them  much 
more  power  and  authority  than  their  predecessors  had.  The  latter 
separated  themselves  entirely  from  the  recent  arrivals, 
adopting  the  name  of  '  Parisiens '  and  calling  the  others 
'  Burdegalenses.' 

Unfortunately  Buchanan  himself  heedlessly  supplied  them 
with  the  means  of  satisfying  their  hatred.  Apart  from  the 
fact  of  his  being  a  foreigner,  and  his  past  life  having  caused 
him  to  be  suspected  in  religious  matters,  he  was  careless  in  his 
acts  and  speech  and  in  the  selection  of  his  friends, — all  of  which 
was  carefully  scored  up  against  him. 

Manoel  de  Mesquita,  of  whom  I  have  just  spoken,  asserted 
that  he  had  heard  a  relation  of  Teive  say  that  a  certain 
Countess  or  Duchess,  in  the  Lutheran  country,  had  sent  for 
Teive  and  Buchanan,  and  had  remitted  money  for  their 
travelling  expenses  with  an  allowance  of  five  hundred 
cruzados  (£50)  for  each  of  them.  Mesquita  said  that  he  had 
seen  Buchanan  playing  at  bowls  and  eating  and  drinking  before 

F 


66  Buchanan  in  Portugal 

Mass.       Others  had  seen  him  eat  meat  on  days  when  it  was 
prohibited  by  the  Church  of  Rome. 

Antonio  de  Cabedo,  the  Bishop  of  Tangier's  nephew, 
deposed  that,  about  two  years  before,  he  had  borrowed  of 
Master  Geoi-ge  Buchanan  a  book  of  verses  from  which  to  copy 
some  lines  which  he  had  written  upon  one  of  the  Psalms  of 
David.  Pie  found  in  the  book  certain  written  matter,  but 
he  could  not  swear  whether  it  was  in  the  handwriting  of  Buchanan 
or  not.  It  was  as  follows: — Vix  datus  est  tumulus  Codrum  si 
rere  fuisse  forte  Luthtranum  falere  -pawper  erat.  Accord- 
ing to  Cabedo  the  meaning  of  this  was: — "If  thou 
thinkest  that  Codrum  was  refused  burial  because  he  was  a 
Lutheran,  thou  art  mistaken ;  he  was  refused  it  because  he  was 
poor." 

By  the  discussing  of  these  petty  details  publicly  and  privately 
at  Coimbra  and  in  Lisbon,  a  feeling  was  created  against 
the  Professors  who  had  been  engaged  in  France,  and  it  is 
probable  that  the  development  of  that  feeling  was  fostered  by 
the  Jesuits,  although  they  did  not  take  any  openly  antagonistic 
action.  They  had  a  College  of  their  own  at  Coimbra,  and  it 
answered  their  purpose  that  the  orthodoxy  of  the  professors  of 
the  Royal  College  should  be  questioned  so  that  they  might  have 
a  plausible  argument  for  inducing  wealthy  parents  to  withdraw 
their  children  from  that  school  and  place  them  in  theirs. 

At  last  the  storm  bui'st, — but  it  was  brought  on  by  means 
unsuspected  until  these  Records  were  discovered,  and  not  by 
the  direct  action  of  the  Religious  Orders  as  has  been  supposed. 
Doctor  Diogo  de  Gouvea,  called  the  ' '  Elder  "  to  distinguish 
him  from  a  learned  nephew  of  the  same  name,  after  having 
been  a  Professor  at  the  University  of  Paris,  Principal  of  Sainte 
Barbe  and  latterly  of  the  College  of  Bordeaux,  was  made 
Principal  of  the  Royal  College  at  Coimbra.  Later  on  he  was 
deprived  by  Dom  John  III.  of  that  office,  and  was  succeeded  by 
Andre  de  Gouvea, — another  of  his  nephews.  Diogo  de  Gouvea 
was  most  irascible  and  withal  a  very  cunning  man.  He 
resolved  to  be  revenged  upon  his  nephew,  but,  to  avoid  the 
imputation  of  bringing  his  own  Uesh  and  blood  to  disgrace,  he 
sooms  to  have  resolved  to  work  ilostruction  secretly,  viz.,  by 
means  of  the  Inquisition  which  was  at  that  time  beginning  to 
extend  its  power  and  inilucuco.  Diogo  spread  reports  that 
Andre  had  Lutheran  tendencies,  and  probably  had  succeeded 


Buchanan  in  Portugal  67 

in  arousing  the  suspicions  of  the  Holy  Office,  when  Andre  died, 
after  a  few  days'  illness,  without  the  Sacraments  of  the  Roman 
Catholic  Church.  Andre  was  succeeded  as  Principal  by  his 
friend,  Joam  da  Costa,  who,  in  consequence,  inherited  the 
enmity  which  Diogo  had  been  unable  to  assuage  upon  his 
nephew. 

Costa  had  already  incurred  the  hatred  of  a  Dominican, 
Friar  Joam  Pinheiro,  by  having,  years  before  at  Bordeaux, 
publicly  flogged  him  after  he  had  attained  to  manhood, — for 
which  flogging  the  young  man  had  sworn  to  be  revenged. 
Pinheiro  was  then  at  a  Convent  of  his  Order  at  Paris,  and 
Diogo  de  Gouvea  was  also  living  at  that  city.  How  the  action 
of  the  Holy  Office  was  immediately  brought  about  is  not  made 
clear.  Costa  and  Teive  both  attribute  it  to  Diogo  de  Gouvea 
in  the  first  instance,  and  assert  that  Friar  Joam  Pinheiro  was 
only  his  instrument.  What  we  know  took  place  was  as 
follows :  — On  the  17th  of  October,  1549,  a  Commission  was 
issued  by  order  of  the  Cardinal  Prince,  Dom  Henrique,  as 
Inquisitor  General,  and  signed  by  him  (although  it  does  not 
necessarily  follow  that  it  originated  with  him)  by  which  the 
Judge  of  the  Lisbon  Court  of  Appeal,  the  Licentiate — Braz 
d'Alvide,  and  Friar  Duarte — an  Augustine  Priest,  were  ordered 
to  examine  a  certain  witness,  then  in  Paris,  together  with  such 
other  witnesses  as  he  might  suggest,  with  regard  to  the 
characters  of  the  Portuguese  and  the  foreign  Professors  who 
were  then  teaching  in  the  Royal  College  at  Coimbra. 

The  Inquest  was  opened  on  the  22nd  of  the  following 
November  in  the  apartments  of  Braz  d'Alvide  who  acted  as 
Registrar,  Friar  Duarte  being  the  Examiner.  The  Licentiate 
appears  to  have  been  sent  specially  to  France  for  the  purpose. 

The  first  witness  examined  and  the  only  one  mentioned  in 
the  Commission  was  Friar  Joam  Pinheiro.  Owing  to  his 
evidence,  Diogo  de  Gouvea,  the  Elder,  was  summoned,  and, 
after  them,  in  consequence  of  their  depositions,  Joannes 
Ferrerius,  Simon  Simson,  Joannes  Talpinus,  Alvaro  da 
Fonseca  and  Sebastian  Rodrigues  were  heard.  The  last 
witness  was  examined  on  the  21st  of  December,  1549; 
but  it  was  only  six  months  later,  on  the  27th  of  June, 
1550,  that  the  Notary  at  the  Lisbon  Inquisition  forwarded  the 
Depositions  to  the  Cardinal  Prince  who,  with  others  of  the 
Supreme  Council  of  the  Holy  Office,   signed  the  finding  of  a 


68  Buchanan  in  Portugal 

true  bill  against  all  of  the  accused,   with   which  the   Records 
were  returned  to  the  lower  Court  on  the  1st  of  August. 

The  proceedings  then  went  rapidly  forward.  Joam  da  Costa 
was  captured  in  Lisbon  where  he  then  was,  having  either  gone 
to  the  Capital  upon  business,  or  having  been  sent  for  purposely. 
Teive  and  Buchanan  were  arrested  at  Coimbra,  on  the  10th  of 
August.  They  were  requested  to  attend  at  the  Bishop's 
Palace,  and  were  there  detained  by  one  of  the  high  dignitaries 
of  the  Lisbon  Court  who  had  been  sent  for  the  purpose.  They 
were  called  upon  to  give  up  their  keys,  their  rooms  and  boxes 
were  searched,  and  they  were  handed  over  to  an  inferior  officer 
who  accompanied  them  to  Lisbon.  The  Minutes  of  the  search 
at  their  lodgings  give  some  curious  details  of  their  books  and 
pecuniary  possessions.  Buchanan  was  even  allowed  to  retain 
his  money  and  valuables  without  any  record  of  their  amount 
being  kept ;  and  permission  was  granted  him  to  leave  part  of  his 
goods  in  the  possession  of  his  friend,  Nicholas  Grouchy. 

It  has  been  supposed  that  Cardinal  Beaton  was  the  cause  of 
Buchanan  falling  into  the  clutches  of  the  Holy  Office,  but  the 
evidence  of  Joannes  Ferrerius  shews  that  this  was  not  so.  It 
was  brief  and,  without  quoting  any  positive  facts,  simply,  to 
the  effect  that  he  held  Buchanan  to  be  a  Lutheran  at  heart.' 
That  he  was  not  directly  influenced  by  Cardinal  Beaton  is 
shewn  by  Braz  d'Alvide's  preface  to  his  evidence,  when  he 
speaks  of  Ferrerius  as  being,  at  that  time,  tutor  to  the  nephews 
of  the  Cardinal  of  Scotland,  "  a  cpuni  Beos  liaja — to  whom  may 
God  be  merciful," — implying  that  he  was  already  dead.  Simon 
Simson,  a  Scotsman,  deposed,  briefly,  to  the  same  effect. 

These  witnesses  did  not  present  themselves  voluntarily.  They 
were  called  upon  to  give  evidence  in  consequence  of  the 
reference  made  to  them  by  the  first  two  witnesses. 
Consequently,  I  cannot  but  think  that  Cardinal  Beaton 
contributed  very  little  to  the  misfortune  which  fell  upon 
Buchanan  after  his  (the  Cardinal's)  death,  however  great  may 
have  been  the  ill-will  which  he  bore  him  while  living. 
The  Franciscans,  also,   had  little    or    no    responsibility    in    the 

'  Buchanan  Hocnis  tii  liave  boon  inforiuiul  many  years  afterwards  of  the 
niituri!  of  the  uvidunco  of  Imlli  Talpin  ami  Funerius: — "lUxrruut  se  expluribus 
hominibns  fide  dignis  iiudivisso,  Buchananuni  do  Roniana  roligiono  porperam 
aontiro  "  (  Vita  Sua). 


l!L'C]r.\X.\N    IX    I'niri'I'dAL— PLATE    I. 


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Buchanan  in  Portugal  69 

matter.  Nothing  of  any  importance  was  deposed  by  any 
Franciscan  witness  against  Buchanan,  either  in  the  preliminary 
proceedings  or  afterwards. 

On  the  15th  of  August,  1550,  Master  George  Buchanan  was 
delivered  by  the  officer,  who  had  brought  him  from  Coimbra, 
to  Ignatius  Nunes,  Chief  Gaoler  of  the  Lisbon  Inquisition. 
Three  days  later  he  was  examined  for  the  first  time  by  the 
Bishop  of  Angra^  and  Friar  Jerome  Oleaster.^  The  only  item  of 
importance  in  the  deposition  is  his  declaration  that  he  was 
about  fifty-five  years  of  age. 

On  the  21st  of  the  month  he  was  again  examined  at  great 
length  by  Jerome  Oleaster,  Dr.  Emmanuel,  and  Friar 
Ambrosius  Campello.  He  then  asked  that  writing  materials 
should  be  given  him  that  he  might  write'  out  a  full  statement 
as  to  the  various  matters  upon  which  they  had  examined  him. 
His  request,  which  was  granted,  is  contained  in  the  concluding 
sentences  of  the  record  of  his  examination,  drawn  up  by  the 
Notary  or  Registrar  of  the  Court."  The  official  caligraphy  of 
the  sixteenth  century  is  so  peculiar  that,  to  the  unpractised  eye, 
it  may  be  and  has  been  taken  for  short-hand.  Its  meaning  in 
English  is :  — 

"...  but  he  has  no  recollection  of  any  articles  in  particular;  he  only 
remembers  that,  when  he  heard  aome  Catholic  preacher,  the  Faith  of  the 
Church  appeared  to  him  to  be  the  right  one,  and  when,  later  on,  he  again 
heard  some  Lutheran,  the  opinions  of  Luther  seemed  to  him  to  be  correct ; 
and  he  was  in  these  doubts  all  the  time  he  was  in  England,  which  was  five  or 
six  months.  Items: — Being  examined  upon  aome  other  Articles  and  also 
upon  some  things  which  were  necessary  for  the  explanation  of  that  which  he 
has  said,  he  replied  that,  as  he  could  not  now  narrate  those  things  in  their 
proper  order,  he  begged  them  to  order  paper  and  ink  to  be  gi\en  to  him,  to 
enable  him  to  draw  up  his  confession  in  an  orderly  way  :  and  they  ordered 
them  tOfbe  given  to  him,  admonishing  him,  by  the  Love  of  our  Lord,  to 
thoroughly  unburden  his  conscience  and  ask  pardon  for  all,  because,  if  he  did 
so,  he  would  be  received  with  much  mercy.  I,  Antonio  Rodrigues,  wrote  it. 
=  Friar  Hieronimo  d'Azambuja= Manuel  docteur '' =  Oeorgius  Buchananus  = 
Ambrosius." 

'  Bishop  of  Angra  or  Azores  was  a  deputy  of  the  Inquisition. 

^  This  is  the  same  person  as  signs  himself  "Friar  Hieronimo  d'Azambuja." 

'  See  Plate  I.  Buchanan  also  refers  to  his  treatment  by  the  Inquisition  in 
Vita  Sua  :  "In  Buchananum  certe  acerbissime  insultabant,  ut  qui  peregrinus 
esset,  et  qui  minime  multos  illio  haberefc  qui  incoluraitate  gauderent,  aut 
dolori  ingemiscerent,  aut  injuriam  uloisci  conarentur." 

^  Doctor  Emmanuel  (or  Manuel)  Antunes  and  Doctor  Ambrosius  Cam- 
pello were  deputies  of  the  Inquisition,  the  former  being  an  Apostolic  notary. 


70  Buchanan  in  Portugal 

On  the  23rd  of  August  he,  on  oath,  affirmed  the  truth  of  the 
statements  contained  in  a  Defence,'  written  in  Latin,  which  he 
then  placed  in  the  hands  of  Oleaster  and  the  Licentiate  Jorge 
Gonsalves  Ribeiro.^  In  order  to  show  the  clearness  of  Buchanan's 
hand-writing  at  this  period,  the  first  page  of  the  manuscript  of 
this  Defence,  ending  with  the  words  "  et  qui  a  veteru  institutis 
destiuissent,"  has  been  reproduced  by  photography  (Plate  II.) 
and  is  here  given  in  English  :  ^ — 

"I,  George  Buchanan,  by  nationality  a  Soot,  of  the  diocese  of  Olasgow, 
say  as  follows  : — 

When  criminal  proceedings  were  ordered  against  the  Lutherans  in  1539, 
I  had  some  fear  for  myself  on  several  accounts.  In  the  first  place,  nearly  two 
years  before,  I  had  a  dispute  with  a  certain  Franciscan  as  to  the  Scots  form  of 
process  in  capital  offences,  specially  heresy.  As  I  had  recently  returned  from 
Prance  and  was  better  acquainted  with  the  practice  of  French  courts,  I 
expressed  my  surprise  that  in  Scotland  men  were  liable  to  be  condemned  on 
testimony  given  by  persons  who  were  not  disclosed  to  them,  and  sometimes 
even  by  their  personal  enemies.  No  one,  however  innocent,  could  escape 
being  entrapped,  if  he  had  enviers  or  enemies.  I  had  in  my  mind  a  recent 
example.  An  accused  merchant  had  craved  his  judges  to  reject  certain 
persons  who  were  his  deadly  enemies,  but  his  plea  had  been  disallowed. 

As  the  Franciscan's  conduct  of  this  discussion  failed  to  satisfy  those  who 
were  present,  he  began  to  scatter  many  injurious  suspicions  of  me  among  the 
common  people.  By  way  of  retaliation,  I  translated  into  Latin  verse  an  old 
Soots  epigram,  the  meaning  of  which  I  have  already  explained.  After  that 
we  fought  it  out  on  both  sides  with  hatred  and  abuse,  and  many  insults  were 
bandied  to  and  fro,  but  without  any  attack  on  anything  which  touched 
religion. 

Meanwhile  it  happened  that  a  conspiracy  at  Court  was  being  investigated, 
and  the  king  made  up  his  mind  that  the  Franciscans  were  in  its  secrets.  In 
his  anger  against  them,  not  ignorant  of  the  footing  of  hostility  on  which  they 
and  I  stood,  he  commanded  and,  as  some  most  eminent  persons  well  know, 
and  the  Franciscans  themselves  are  well  aware,  compelled  me  to  write  a 
satire  against  them.  As  the  Franciscans  had  never  ceased  from  traducing 
me  in  all  manner  of  ways,  I  made  my  satire  somewhat  more  sharp  than  I  had 
intended,  but  I  certainly  oast  no  reflection  on  the  Christian  religion,  and  I 
expressly  protested  that  against  the  Order  or  against  good  Franciscans  of  the 
type  of  older  times  I  said  nothing,  but  attacked  only  the  dissolute  members 
of  the  Order  who  had  broken  away  from  the  ancient  rule." 

'  The  whole  Defence  is  to  bo  found  in  Appendix  I.  of  this  volume. 

^  Friar  Jorgo  Gonaalvea  Riboiro  was  connected  as  assessor  with  the  Holy 
Office  in  Liabim  for  thirty  years. 

■''  The  following  translations  of  parts  of  (ho  Defend'  are  by  Professor 
Kc^nnedy  of  AberdiMin. 


BUCHAXAX    l.\    I'OKTl'CAL     I'LATK    II. 


■     r  t      f-^  ^  ■_/-  ^  .  ^/-^^r  ^r^h,    i-^j>tt 

i;jf   t?}  frit!    cn-njni .   prm-»     htrm^-'nn^    ff^'    ct-n-tr    -hcit  mifi,  A-i/it  4-,, 


)/ 


_  '^- 


<:.'y^-fe7ri 


n<>yn   dun/t^i    -fn\\i-^i   yirofn,    ^f"^   c-h-nm    »tr?-.V,r'.rf!rf:  .-f  .-//'■^'■--S 


J't 


'  •''■--',/ 


C-orKi  .    jf  /(I'hrr    -friyyiTi /rnrtf)     rw"  c-ry^ri^fhi^v^  ks  ^'    ''n     n'/'f'i^hihrT,/ 


,-t 


Aa     fiV,    ry-,<lf^    f^fhr.^     j-;tT-w^-    mrtnh^    n  h-A    r,/i,A    rr    ^  :,^ 


ak     T-p/,r;r,7r5      r-rt/iTTji^W     .T*/wrrf  f-   yi^/r!-^,  ^    wKrrr^     ?7t      -t"//lrf^| 
/  'rr'?/-'  "/    '    ■         -  -•  '  ■  '    ' 

,   ^^.,f  .;„    ,Cj  T^r.t^'v''^"-"-^'   -7'"^"    ''"■*'''"    /^«^^ /.-.-;  '^;-r<""^/»^^,-l 
Pint  page  uf  BiuhuaariH  first  MaUment  0/  hi,  mfence  to  the  InquMtou. 


ff/^i   r!>     .'/Za    /^.■+r/fr< >■■■'"" 


BUCHAiVAN   IN   I'OJ; 


t('<;al^plate  iji. 


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frnfni*rrr    fKr:/}'^    /^'^>Cycr.'/Se  ,- ,  .- 


Buchanan  in  Portugal  71 

The  last  page  of  the  same  Defence,  beginning  at  the  words 
"  petunt  ea  quae  a  dec  peti  debent,"  is  also  reproduced  (Plate 
III.)  and  has  been  translated  as  follows:  — 

["Of  prayers  to  Saints,  according  to  ancient  custom,  in  wliich  we  either 
entreat  them  to  intercede  for  us,  or  in  remembrance  of  them  ask  anything  of 
God,  I  have  always  approved.  But  many  of  these  prayers  seemed  to  me 
superstitious,  in  which  those  who  pray]  ask  from  the  Saints  alone  what  ought 
to  be  asked  of  God, — things  which  are  supposed  to  be  a  remedy  against  various 
evils,  for  example,  wounds  and  fever. 

•  In  England  I  saw  pictures  of  various  kinds,  which  I  sometimes  explained, 
while  in  France,  to  those  who  asked  about  them.  Some  of  these  I  had  seen 
in  Scotland,  which  the  Ambassador  from  England,  the  Bishop  of  St.  David's, 
had  brought  with  him,  and  which  disturbed  the  minds  of  not  a  few. 

With  regard  to  Images,  I  approved  of  what  I  saw  being  done  in  England, 
namely,  that  such  Images  as  were  being  worshipped  superstitiously  (for 
example,  an  image  of  the  Crucified  One, '  which  went  through  the  motions  of 
nodding,  laughing,  and  expressing  other  feelings,  and  the  image  darvr.l 
■  Madezim  ')  should  be  removed,  but  that  all  others  should  remain,  and  that  at 
least  four  times  a  year  the  priest  should  explain  to  the  people  the  true  mean- 
ing and  use  of  Images  and  other  ceremonies  which  were  deemed  necessary 
for  the  people. 

Of  Judaism  I  have  not  thought  at  all.  As  to  the  sect  of  Anabaptists,  I 
do  not  yet  know  what  it  is. 

Epicureans  I  have  always,  in  every  society,  testified  against,  not  only  in 
converse,  but  by  my  poems. 

As  to  books,  I  have  none  which  are  not  old.  There  is  nothing  which,  in 
every  place,  I  have  been  more  careful  to  impress  upon  my  scholars  than  that 
they  should  abstain  from  reading  new  books  in  any  department  of  knowledge 
until  they  have  first  thoroughly  perused  the  old. 

That  by  Babylon  and  by  the  woman  in  the  Apocalypse,  Rome  is  signified, 
I  was  at  one  time  inclined  to  think.  But  when  I  reflected  with  myself  that 
all  interpretations  of  prophetic  references  to  the  future  were  dangerous,  and 
that  for  the  most  part  these  could  not  be  understood  until  the  event  made 
them  clear,  I  instantly  suspended  my  judgment  and  was  easily  content,  like 
many  others,  to  remain,  on  this  point,  in  ignorance. — I,  George  Buchanan, 
have  with  my  own  hand  written  and  subscribed." 

On  the  1st  of  September  1550  he  was  again  examined  at 
great  length  by  Jerome  and  Ambrosius  Campello  as  to  his 
religious  doubts  and  errors,  the  result  being  that  he  filed  an 
Appendix  to  his  first  statement.  * 

■  Omitted  here  is  the  translation  of  a  passage  which  it  is  difficult  to  fit 
into  its  proper  place.     It  refers  to  certain  pictures. 
^  Probably  the  Crucifix  of  Boxley  in  Kent. 
^  Probably  the  famous  image  at  Dovei  court  in  Suffolk. 
^  See  Appendix  I. 


72  Buchanan  in  Portugal 

Ten  days  later  Oleaster  and  Jorge  Gonsalves  Ribeiro  again 
sent  for  him  and  sought  to  persuade  him  to  accuse  other 
persons.  They  repeated  their  efforts  on  the  17th  of  September, 
but  each  time  without  result,  and  then  he  was  left  in  peace 
until  the  11th  of  October  when  he  underwent  a  short 
examination  by  the  same  Judges,  as  to  eating  meat  on  days  of 
abstinence. 

Two  other  examinations  took  place,  on  the  12th  of  December 
1550  and  the  7th  of  January  1551,  the  first  before  Ambrosius 
Campello,  and  the  second  before  Friar  Jorge  de  Santiago,  but 
the  prisoner  was  again  left  to  his  reflections  until  the  15th  May 
1551,  in  the  interval  and  without  his  knowledge  some  evidence 
being  taken  with  reference  to  a  pardon  from  the  Pope,  of  which 
he  alleged  that  he  had  availed  himself  when  in  France. 
Eventually,  at  the  suggestion  of  one  of  the  Judges — the  Bishop 
of  Angra,  he  withdrew  his  claim  to  this  Pardon,  a  copy  of 
which  the  Inquisitors  appear  to  have  obtained,  as  it  is  filed  on 
the  Records.  It  is  manifestly  only  a  secular  pardon  from 
Francis,  King  of  France. 

In  July  1551  sentence  was  pronounced  upon  Buchanan, 
condemning  him  to  make  public  abjuration  of  his  errors  before 
the  Inquisitors  and  their  Officers,  and  to  be  confined  during  the 
pleasure  of  the  former  in  a  Convent  which  they  would  appoint, 
where  he  was  to  occupy  himself  in  things  for  the  good  of  his 
salvation. 

This  sentence,  of  the  latter  part  of  which  a  facsimile  is  given 
in  Plate  IV.,  has  been  fully  translated  from  the  Portuguese:^ — 

"  The  Commissioners  of  the  Holy  Inquisition  and  the  (Judge)  Ordinary- 
concur,  that,  whereas  having  seen  how  by  these  documents  and  the  confession 
of  the  culprit,  Master  George  Buchanan,  a  Scotsman,  it  is  shewn  that  he,  a 
Christian,  was  departing  from  our  Holy  Catholic  Faith  and  fi-om  the  Holy 
Mother  Church,  hesitating  and  doubting  in  matters  of  faith  for  the  space  of 
three  years,  frequently  resting  in  Lutheran  opinions,  holding  that  the  body  of 
our  Lord  was  not  present  in  the  Sacrament  of  the  Mass,  except  as  a  symbol 
and  not  in  reality,  and  often  doubting  and  wavering  in  regard  to  this,  doubt- 
ing also  as  to  the  Mass  being  any  sacrifice,  and  also  doubting  and  hesitating 
in  the  Article  of  Purgatory,  holding,  as  it  were,  that  we  are  justified  by  faith 
alone,  holding  also  and  believing  that  it  was  no  sin  if  one  did  not  confess  at 
the  seasons  appointed  by  the  Holy  Mother  Church,  there  being  no  offence  in 
this,  and  holding  that  the  Ordinance  of  Confession  wa.s  human  and  not  divine, 

1  This  has  been  translated  by  Rev.  R.  M.  Lithgow  of  Lisbon,  whose  kind 
.lorviccs  in  securing  the  photographs  of  the  documents  nocesaitatod  much  time 
and  trouble. 


BUCHANAN    IN    l'«)KTU(iAL~PLATE   IV. 


iimAtf  t'M'firat:  i&Jklf-  Cm/U  d  cimti^/i'fsjwf^s 

f^'^'^TJ  J,r/>/^- ^^fr/rm  ^t^rdr  ^ 


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tjuxl  ii,!,;,'  uj  MS.  ,;„iliiiinii.i  III.-  snilnirr  ../  tin-  I ihiiiitiilivii  on  Ijiichii nun. 


Buchanan  in  Portugal  73 

and  that  it  surely  was  no  sin  to  disobey  human  laws,  there  not  being  any 
offence  or  injury  to  another  in  this  ;  it  also  seeming  to  him  that  he  need  not 
obey  the  ordinance  of  the  Church  in  regard  to  abstention  from  meat  on  the 
forbidden  days,  and  that  it  was  better  to  go  direct  to  God  than  to  the  saints, 
all  which  errors  are  disallowed  as  Lutheran  heresies  and  condemned  by  Holy 
Mother  Church.  Seeing  all  which,  with  what  more  is  set  forth  in  the  docu- 
ments, and  seeing  besides  how  he,  the  culprit,  moved  by  true  and  sound 
counsel,  came  at  length  to  recognise  his  errors  and,  with  many  signs  of 
repentance,  to  beseech  for  them  pardon  of  our  Lord  and  the  mercy  of  the 
Holy  Mother  Church,  with  whatever  else  appears  from  the  said  documents — 
the  culprit.  Master  George,  be  received  to  the  Reconciliation,  Union,  and 
Mercy  of  Holy  Mother  Church  as  he  requests,  and  that  he  be  required  in 
penance  to  make  public  formal  abjuration  of  his  errors  before  the  Inquisitors 
and  their  Officers  at  an  audience,  and  to  stay  within  the  convent  prescribed  as 
his  prison  for  such  time  as  appears  good  to  the  said  Inquisitors,  where  he 
shall  occupy  himself  in  certain  devotional  exercises  and  things  necessary  for 
his  salvation,  and  they  decree  that  this  shall  be  made  absolute  in  the  ecclesi- 
astical form  of  excommunication  which  has  been  incurred. 

The  Bishop  of  Angra.  Ambkosius,  Doctor. 

Friar  Georqius  Sanoti  Jacoei.        Friar  Hieronymds  D'Azameuja. 
Imandbl,  Doctor.  Friar  Jorge  Gonsalves  Ribeiro 

Martin  Lopez  Lobo."  ^ 

On  the  29th  of  that  month  he  made  abjuration,  and  was 
absolved  from  the  Excommunication  which  he  had  incurred. 

The  first  monks  who  were  requested  to  receive  the 
Scottish  Humanist  excused  themselves  on  the  ground 
that  the  only  accommodation  they  could  offer  was  poor. 
The  Convent  selected  for  his  period  of  penance  was  that  of 
Saint  Bento,  belonging  to  the  Secular  Canons  of  Saint  John 
the  Evangelist,  in  the  locality  formerly  known  as  Xabregas, 
but  now  called  Beato  Antonio.  After  the  extinction  of  the 
Religious  Orders,  it  was  converted  into  a  steam  flour  mill 
owned  by  Senhor  Joam  de  Brito.  Friar  Peter  of  Saint  John, 
the  Prior  of  that  House,  expressed  in  the  following  letter  to  one 
of  the  Inquisitors  his  willingness  to  receive  and  lodge  the  peni- 
tent to  the  best  of  his  ability  :  — 

"Reverend  Father, — Your  Reverence  must  not  be  surprised  if  the 
accommodation  for  this  penitent  is  not  very  comfortable,  as  the  House  itself 
and  the  division  thereof  will  allow  of  no  better.  As  your  Reverence  assures 
that  his  residence  will  not  be  for  long,  the  monks  and  myself  have  agreed  to 
obey  the  Cardinal  Infante  and  your  good  selves,  and  to  do  what  you  have 

1  Martin  Lopez  Lobo  was  a  deputy  of  the  Inquisition,  and  an  assessor  to 
the  Court. 


74  Buchanan  In  Portugal 

ordered.  You  can  send  him  whenever  you  like,  and  he  will  have  to  put  up 
with  whatever  there  is  in  the  way  of  lodging  because  we  can  do  no  more  for 
our  Lord." 

Buchanan  was  sent  there,  where  he  remained  until  the  17th  of 
December  1551.  That  day  Friar  Jorge  de  Santiago  went  to  the 
Convent  and  informed  him  that  the  Cardinal  Prince  had  been 
pleased  to  grant  him  permission  to  reside  in  Lisbon,  but  that 
he  was  not  to  leave  the  city.  On  the  last  day  of  February 
1552,  Buchanan  attended  at  the  Inquisition  to  receive  his  final 
order  of  freedom.  The  letter,  signed  by  the  Cardinal  Prince, 
in  which  Master  Friar  Jorge  de  Santiago  was  ordered  to 
acquaint  Buchanan  that  he  was  to  be  allowed  to  leave  the 
Convent,  can  be  seen  (Plate  V.).  It  reads,  when  rendered  into 
English,  as  follows  :  — 

"  Master  Friar  Jorge  de  Santiago, 

The  Cardinal  Prince  sends  you  much  greeting. 

It  is  my  pleasure  to  release  Master  Joham  da  Coata  and  Master  George 
Buchanan,  so  that  thej'  may  quit  the  monasteries  in  which  they  now  are,  and 
go  to  the  city  ;  but  they  will  not  leave  it  without  my  further  orders.  I 
therefore  charge  you  to  make  this  known,  and  to  cause  that  it  be  so  done. 
Should  you  and  the  other  Deputies  think  fit  to  release  them,  and  allow  them 
to  leave  the  City,  you  may  order  the  permits  to  be  drawn  up  in  such  form  as 
you  think  best,  and  send  them  to  me  to  be  sigaed. 

Written  at  Evora,  on  the  13th  of  December,  .Toham  de  Sande  did  this  in 

The  Cardinal  PRijfCE." 

The  Final  Warrant  for  Release,  which  is  among  the 
documents,  is  thus  expressed  :  ^ — 

"  On  the  last  day  of  February,  1.552,  at  Lisbon,  in  the  Despatch  House  of 
the  Inquisition,  there  being  present  the  Reverend  Senhor  the  Master-Priest, 
Friar  George  de  Santiago,  Inquisitor,  and  the  Deputies  of  the  Inquisition, 
they  ordered  Master  George  Buchanan  to  be  brought,  and  told  him  that  the 
Senhor  Cardinal  Prince,  Inquisitor  General,  had  seen  fit  to  gi-ant  him  a  full 
dispensation,  so  that  he  might  go  away  ;  and  they  recommended  him  that 
ever  in  his  work  he  should  associate  with  good  and  pious  Christians,  and 
should  confess  himself  often,  and  so  live  to  our  Lord  as  a  good  Christian  ; 
and  he  said  that  he  would  do  so. 

Antonio  Riaz,  Sea-etary."- 

The  conclusions  at  which  I  arrive,  after  a  careful 
examination  of  the  three  Records,  are  that  the  Inquisition,  in 
view  of  the  evidence  sent  from  Par's  and    the    reports    which 

'  Translated  from  (ho  Portuguese  by  Ro\'.  R.  M.  Lith"ow. 
'■Antonio  Ria/.  w.as  an  .Apostolic  notary. 


BUCHANAN  IN  PORTUGAL— PLATE  V 


/jij*«i'M^--ft4:'" 


<i  J^j^i^SAnna^  ,  J  CmJ  I  At  ..^-ff  \ti  irnriy"  ^•'^y^  S'<^^3-\  x_ 

^ftj  V^"^^5V5^J>«'AV5j«  niim«n.-\A<v.  ^vv.-pav.-n-v    (^~^,^.^rt.i  m.mJ* 
S-LA^-Si^^^fnvA^t     ,;:^^^m*r/iwr  -;<i--f%j^^-v  5   j'J      ^''- 


^b 


'J 


Intiinatioii  of  Relenw. 


Buchanan  in  Portugal  75 

had  undoubtedly  reached  the  Judges,  both  from  Coimbra  and 
Lisbon,  had  sufficient  grounds  (according  to  the  usages  of  that 
period)  for  proceeding  against  the  three  professors. 
Buchanan's  nationality  did  not  influence  his  Judges  against 
him,  for  his  sentence  was  precisely  the  same  as  those  of  the 
other  two  defendants;  and  it  cannot  be  said  that  it  was  severe. 
From  the  standpoint  of  the  Inquisition  his  own  confessions 
were  sufficient  to  condemn  him ;  but  the  fact  of  his  confessing 
rendered  him  more  deserving  of  mercy. 

The  Records  of  Buchanan's  trial  shew  that  his  behaviour 
throughout  that  painful  period  was  prudent  and  proper. 
Compared  with  his  earlier  imprudences,  it  even  creates  the 
impression  that  some  one  privately  advised  him  as  to  the  best 
course  to  follow.  He  acted  properly  because,  from  the  first 
examination  to  the  last  and  in  spite  of  all  the  efforts  which,  as 
was  the  custom,  were  made  to  induce  him  to  denounce  others  to 
the  Court,  he  steadfastly  declined  to  do  so. 

He  was  prudent  because  he,  at  the  outset,  disarmed  the 
prosecution  by  confessing  how  he  had  doubted  and  wavered, 
and  how  he  had  strengthened  himself  in  the  Faith,  and 
obtained  pardon  for  his  errors,  before  coming  to  Portugal.  All 
through  the  proceedings,  he  gave  proof  of  admirable  coolness, 
astuteness  and  courage.  He  compromised  neither  friend  nor 
enemy.  He  did  not  bluster  at  the  commencement — as  Costa 
did,  or  abjectly  pray  for  mercy  afterwards — as  both  Costa 
and  Teive  did.  Either  he  had  great  courage  or  he  had  reason 
to  believe  that  the  Inquisition  was  favourably  disposed  towards 
him,  and  that  the  most  he  had  to  fear  was  detention  for  a 
longer  or  shorter  term. 

It  is  said  that  Buchanan  asked  for  and  received  a  promise 
from  the  King  of  Portugal  that  he  would  protect  him  while  in 
his  dominions;  but  I  presume  that  no  proof  of  this  exists.  He 
alleged  nothing  of  the  kind  in  his  pleadings.  In  fact,  the 
Royal  Authority,  in  any  Catholic  country,  could  only  avail  him 
as  regarded  the  pains  and  penalties  of  the  Civil  Law ;  the  King 
of  Portugal  was  as  powerless  as  the  King  of  Scotland  in 
ecclesiastical  matters. 

*        *         *         * 

As  a  fitting  conclusion  to  this  chapter,  a  short  notice  of 
Buchanan's  fellow-prisoners  and  of  the  Inquisitor  who  took  the 
most  active  part  in  his  trial  will  be  of  some  interest. 


76  Buchanan  in  Portugal 

JoAM  DA  Costa  was  born  at  Villa  Nova  de  Portimao.  He 
made  abjuration  of  his  errors  on  the  same  day  as  the  others, 
the  29th  of  July  1551 ;  he  obtained  permission  to  leave  the 
Convent  of  Saint  Eloy,  in  Lisbon,  on  the  17th  of  December 
1551,  and  was  finally  released  on  the  4th  of  February  1552. 
At  the  time  of  his  decease  which  took  place  a  short  time  before 
the  battle  of  Alcacer-Kibir,  fought  on  the  4th  of  August  1578, 
he  was  Prior  of  the  Mother  Church  of  the  town  of  Aveiro, 
dedicated  to  Saint  Michael. 

DiOGO  DE  Teive  abjured  on  the  29th  of  July  1551,  entered 
the  Convent  of  Belem  near  Lisbon  on  the  31st  of  that  month  to 
perform  his  penance,  left  it  on  the  14th  of  the  following  Sep- 
tember, by  permission  of  the  Cardinal  Prince  granted  in  con- 
sideration of  his  state  of  health  and  because  the  monks  required 
the  room  which  he  was  occupying,  and  was  finally  set 
free  on  the  22nd  of  September.  Eventually  he  seems  to  have 
returned  to  the  Royal  College  of  Coimbra,  for  it  was  to  him, 
as  Principal,  that  Dom  John  III.  addressed,  on  the  10th  of 
September  1555,  the  Order  to  hand  over  that  establishment  to 
Diogo  Mirao — the  Provincial  of  the  Jesuits. 

He  was  a  native  of  Braga, —  the  '  Bracara  Augusta  '  of  the 
Romans.  He  wrote  several  works  in  Latin,  a  collection  of 
which,  edited  by  Jose  Caetano  de  Mesquita,  was  published  at 
Paris  in  1762.  In  a  short  biography  with  which  Mesquita 
prefaced  his  book  he  says :  ' '  Jacobus  Tevius  Bracarae 
Augustae  in  Lusitania  natus,  humanioribus  litteris  et  Jure 
civili  instituendus  Parisios  se  contulit ;  ubi  quantum  in  his 
studiis  profecerit  vividi  elegantisque  ingenii  adolescens,  facile 
ex  eo  intelligitur,  quod  Burdigalenses  suam  in  urbem  eum 
adsciverint,  ut  una  cum  Mureto  et  Buchanano  (quibus  viris!) 
humaniores  litteras  publice  profiteretur."  It  was  upon  one  of 
Teive's  works,  the  Commentarius  de  Eebus  aj»id  Diiim  gestis, 
Buchanan  wrote  these  lines  :  — 

Cum  tua  aoeptra  Asiae  gens  Europaeque  tinioret, 

Et  tremoret  fasces  terra  Lybissa  tuos  ; 
Jamquo  jugi  patiens  Indus,  nee  turpe  put«ret 

A  Domino  Ganges  posoero  jura  Tago  : 
Inque  tuis  Phoebus  regnis  oriensque  oadensquc 

Vix  longum  fosao  conderet  axo  diom  : 
Kt  quaoouraque  vago  ae  oircnnivolvit  Olympo, 

Lucerot  ratibus  flamma  miniatra  tuis  : 
Glaudobat  tibi  doviotus,  sibi  rodditus  orbis, 

NosBo  Buoa  fines,  justitiamquo  tuam. 


CONVENT  OF  SAINT  BENTO,  XABREGAS,  LISBON. 
(Wlieir  Bucliamni  iviin  imprisoned). 


FKOXT  VIEW. 


BACK    VIEW. 


Buchanan  in  Portugal  77 

Una  aberatque  oberatque  tuis  Mors  saova  triumphis, 

Carpere  victrioem  scilicet  ansa  mammi. 
Et  comes  huio  tenebris  nisa  est  oblivio  caeois 

Fortia  niagnanimftm  oondere  facta  diioum  ; 
Donee  Apollineia  se  Tevius  induit  armis, 

Et  spolia  e  victa,  Morte  superba  tulit ; 
Victui'isque  jubet  chartis  juveueacere  vitae 

Prodiga  pro  Patriae  pectora  laude  suae, 
Proque  aevi  pauois,  quos  Mors  praeoiderat,  anuis 

Reddit  ab  aeterna  posteritate  decus. 
Jure  ergo  inviotus  Rex  es  :  quando  omnia  vincens 

Accessit  titulis  Mors  qiioque  victa  tuis.' 

The  Cardinal  Infante  or  Caedinal  Peince  Henry  was  a 
younger  son  of  Emmanuel,  King  of  Portugal  (1495-1521), 
brother  of  that  King  John  III.  (1521-1557)  who  to  the  ruin 
of  his  country  set  up  the  Inquisition  in  it,  and  uncle  of 
Sebastian  (1557-1578),  upon  whose  death  in  Africa  on  an 
expedition  against  the  Moors,  this  Henry  succeeded  as  last 
King  of  Portugal  (1578-1580)  prior  to  the  Spanish  usurpation 
under  Philip  II.  The  Cardinal  was  Grand  Inquisitor  during 
the  reigns  of  his  brother  and  nephew,  and  only  succeeded  to 
the  throne  when  an  old  dotard. 

Feiae  Hieronimo  d'Azambuja,  the  Judge  most  often 
referred  to  in  the  Records,  is  known  to  foreign  writers  as 
Jerome  Oleaster,  the  latter  name  being  the  Latin  equivalent  of 
his  surname  of  Azambuja — '  the  wild  Olive  tree  ' — but  which 
really  is  the  name  of  the  place  at  which  he  is  said  to  have  been 
born.  A  curious  point  of  this  monk's  parentage  was  discussed 
by  me  in  Vol  II.  of  my  Inef/itos  Goesianos,  page  183  et  seq. 

He  was  a  Dominician  and  took  the  vows  of  that  Order,  in 
the  Batalha  Monastery  on  the  6th  of  October  1520.  Having 
shewn  signs  of  exceptional  ability,  he  was  admitted  to  the 
College  of  St.  Thomas  in  Coimbra  on  the  8th  of  December 
1525,  to  teach  Humanities  and  Theology  in  which  he  held  the 
Degree  of  Doctor.  Having  been  selected  by  Dom  John  III  to 
take  part  in  the  Council  of  Trent,  he  arrived  there  on  the  19th 
of  December  1545,  and  created  some  sensation  at  the  sitting 
which  was  held  on  the  7th  of  the  following  January.  Upon  his 
return  he  was  offered  the  See  of  St.  Thomas,  but  declined 
it.       In    1551    he   was   unanimously    elected    Provincial    of    his 

'  These  verses  are  to  be  found  in  Opera  Buchanani  Tome  II.,  P.  102, — 
there  included  in  the  Poemata  Fragmenta  "quae  nunquam  antea  cum  aliis  ejus 
operibuB  edita  fuerant." 


78  Buchanan  in  Portugal 

Order,  but  was  requested  by  his  Royal  Master  not  to  accept  the 
post.  The  following  year,  while  Prior  of  the  Batalha  Convent, 
he  was  named  by  the  Cardinal  Prince  to  be  Inquisitor  of  the 
Holy  Office  of  Evora,  which  post  he  occupied  from  the  2nd  of 
September,  1552,  until  the  Uth  of  October,  1555,  when  he  passed 
to  the  Lisbon  Inquisition  with  the  same  rank.  The  documents 
of  Buchanan's  trial  and,  in  fact,  many  others  shew  that  he 
acted  as  Inquisitor  in  Lisbon  long  before  that  year.  On  the 
11th  of  June,  1557,  he  had  the  honour,  with  an  Augustine 
Monk,  of  putting  the  shroud  upon  the  mortal  remains  of  his 
King  and  master;  and,  in  1560,  he  was  again  elected 
Provincial  of  his  Order  for  two  years.  He  died  at  the 
beginning  of  1563,  in  the  Lisbon  Convent  of  Saint  Dominic. 

Herculano,  the  celebrated  author  of  the  Historia  da  Origem 
e  Estabelecimento  da  Inqtiisifdo  em  Portugal,  says  of  him,  in 
Vol.  III.,  page  329:  — 

"As  a  matter  of  fact,  tho  converted  Jews  were  not  only  taken  prisoners, 
but  were  put  to  the  torture  without  sufficient  prima  facie  evidence.  The 
celebrated  Oleaster,  or  Friar  Jerome  of  Azambuja,  a  man  of  high  literary 
reputation,  had  distinguished  himself  in  this  species  of  rigour,  and  disputed 
with  Joam  do  Mello  the  palm  of  cruelty.  So  great  had  been  his  excesses, 
that  tho  Prince  found  himself  forced  to  dismiss  him.  Dom  Henrique  con- 
fessed to  the  Nuncio  that  Oleaster  had  gone  beyond  all  bounds  of  moderation." 

This  was  the  man  who,  according  to  Buchanan,  took  some 
pains  to  instruct  him  in  religious  matters. 

Edited  from  the  MS.  of  G.  J.  C.  H. 


VIII. 

Buchanan  and  Mary. 

The  relationship  which  existed  between  Buchanan  and  Mary  has 
puzzled  nearly  every  biographer  of  the  Queen.  During  her  early 
days  in  Scotland  the  poems  and  epigrams  addressed  by  Buchanan 
to  Mary  imply  the  tender  solicitude  of  a  teacher  towards  his 
pupil,  who  was  dear  to  him  as  much  because  of  her  personal 
qualities  as  her  exalted  rank.  Then  came  the  tragic  incident  of 
the  murder  of  Darnley,  and  at  once  the  loving  pedagogue 
became  the  virulent  accuser,  not  over-scrupulous  in  his  assertions 
of  her  guilt,  and  even,  as  Sir  James  Melville  states,  "  cairless  " 
as  to  the  truth  of  the  facts  which  he  boldly  alleged  against  her. 
This  change  of  front — almost  as  great  as  any  inconsistency  which 
he  alleged  against  Lethington  in  Tlie  (Jhamaleun,  has  divided 
Buchanan's  critics  into  opposing  camps.  There  are  those  who 
maintain  that  only  overwhelming  evidence  of  Mary's  duplicity 
and  turpitude  could  have  effected  such  a  change ;  and  the  mere 
fact  of  her  old  friend  Buchanan  turning  against  her  is  advanced 
as  a  convincing  proof  of  her  guilt.  But  there  are  also  those  who 
allege  that  Buchanan  was  a  mercenary  time-server,  ready  to 
place  his  venal  pen  at  the  command  of  the  highest  bidder,  and 
with  a  decided  preference  for  the  cause  of  his  feudal  chief, 
the  Earl  of  Lennox.  Probably  the  truth  lies  between  these 
extremes.  To  reconcile  the  eulogistic  verses  of  Buchanan, 
addressed  to  Queen  Mary  before  and  after  her  marriage  to 
Darnley,  with  the  vitriolic  spleen  against  her  displayed  in  the 
Detectiu,  one  must  carefully  consider  the  positions  of  the  two 
parties.  Buchanan  was  a  humanist  of  wide  experience,  in  touch 
with  the  leaders  of  thought  on  the  Continent,  and  able  to  hold 
his  own  among  the  most  learned.  But,  as  John  Hill  Burton 
remarks,  "  his  rich  genial  mind  was  coated  with  a  sort  of  crust 
of  austerity.  It  was  not  in  his  nature  to  be  a  fanatic,  but  he 
took  to  the  Presbyterian  side  as  the  opponent  of  royal  preroga- 


80  Buchanan  and  Mary 

tive  and  a  vainglorious  hierarchy."  More  than  this  is  necessary 
to  explain  Buchanan's  apparent  animosity  to  Queen  Mary. 
Beneath  all  his  culture  there  was  the  old  Scottish  notion  of  the 
absolute  duty  of  fidelity  to  his  feudal  chief.  This  was  engrained 
in  the  Scottish  spirit  of  the  time ;  and  by  its  predominance  alone 
can  Buchanan's  revulsion  from  Queen  Mary  be  explained. 

Fundamentally,  Buchanan  accepted  the  Athenian  doctrine  of 
the  right  of  the  people  to  remove  by  violence  an  obnoxious  ruler ; 
yet  he  did  not  perceive  that  the  thraldom  of  a  vassal  to  his 
superior,  or  of  a  clansman  to  his  chief,  involved  a  far  worse  form 
of  tyranny  than  could  be  exercised  by  a  crowned  head.  And  to 
that  thraldom,  with  eminently  human  inconsistency,  Buchanan 
was  himself  enslaved.  Admitting  the  existing  fact  of  Mary's 
hereditary  right  to  rule,  yet  somewhat  subdued  from  active 
opposition  by  her  mental  gifts  and  the  graces  of  her  charming 
personality,  he  did  not  raise  his  voice  directly  against  her  when 
he  returned  to  Scotland ;  nay,  he  wrote  numerous  eulogies  upon 
her,  never  once  hinting  at  the  Republican  notions  that  lay  at  the 
back  of  his  brain.  As  a  Protestant,  Buchanan  theoretically 
should  have  been  as  violently  opposed  to  Mary's  marriage  with 
Darnley  as  was  Knox  and  the  Lords  of  the  Congregation.  To 
them  the  proposed  union  appeared  as  a  prelude  to  the  restora- 
tion of  Catholicism  and  the  destruction  of  the  Protestant  Refor- 
mation. Why  did  Buchanan  not  join  with  them  in  denouncing 
this  marriage  as  hateful  to  the  people,  and  perilous  as  threaten- 
ing their  eternal  welfare  ?  True,  he  had  celebrated  her  marriage 
with  the  Dauphin  in  the  famous  E'lnthalam'nim,  which  is  one  of 
the  memorable  examples  of  Scottish  Latinity  of  the  time ;  -but 
that  was  in  a  Catholic  country,  and  addressed  to  fervent 
Catholics.  Here,  in  Scotland,  when  Catholicism  had  been 
deposed  (with  Buchanan's  aid),  from  its  proud  pre-eminence, 
it  seemed  like  treachery  to  the  Protestant  cause  for  him  to 
commend  the  union  in  similarly  deathless  strains.  Why  did  he  do  so? 
Professor  Hume  Brown  has  caught  a  glimpse  of  the  only 
reasonable  explanation,  though  he  has  not  carried  out  the 
argument  to  its  conclusion.  He  writes: — "There  was  a 
reason,  which  must  have  had  a  weight  of  its  own  in  determining 
the  view  which  Buchanan  took  of  Mary's  second  marriage. 
Darnley  was  the  son  of  the  head  of  the  Clan  Lennox,  and  in 
his  exaltation  to  the  throne  Buchanan  would  see  the  glorification 
of  the  clan  to  which   he  himself   bulougod.      Buchanan   would 


QUEEN   MAUY. 

(From  the.  I'lif/riiriin/  in   Volume  II.  of  Ilia  17JS  (iditioii.  of  /:'iirliiiiiaii-'^ 
'  History,' ) 


Buchanan  and  Mary  81 

have  been  no  good  Scotsman  had  he  not  been  susceptible  to 
such  feelings,  and  Buchanan  was  a  Scotsman  to  the  core."  No 
doubt  this  is  true,  and  largely  accounts  for  the  poet's  apparent 
inconsistency.  But  it  has  not  occurred  to  Professor  Hume 
Brown  that  this  very  clan-instinct,  which  made  Buchanan 
approve  of  the  elevation  of  the  chief's  son  to  the  throne,  was 
equally  potent  in  turning  Buchanan's  devotion  to  the  Queen 
into  violent  and  unreasoning  animosity  at  a  later  stage.  He 
saw  Darnley  raised  to  eminence,  and  he  joyfully  approved. 
Possibly  he  did  not  know,  as  we  do,  how  utterly  unworthy 
Darnley  was  of  the  position,  or  he  was  blinded  by  clan-partial- 
ity to  the  defects  of  the  young  chief,  as  many  a  gallant  High- 
lander was  at  Sheriff muir  and  Culloden.  Buchanan  must  have 
known  of  the  bickerings  in  the  royal  household,  and  probably 
blamed  the  Queen  rather  than  his  own  kinsman.  And  when  the 
tragic  episode  of  Darnley's  murder  occurred,  with  all  the  mystery 
by  which  it  was  surrounded,  Buchanan's  first  thought  was  that 
it  was  the  outcome  of  an  old  clan-feud  by  which  the  Hamiltons 
sought  to  remove  Darnley,  slay  the  Queen  and  the  infant  Prince, 
and  clear  the  way  for  their  own  succession  to  the  throne.  A 
careful  examination  of  Buchanan's  partisan  pamphlet  Ane 
Admonitioun  direct  to  the  Treic  Lordis  maintenars  of  Justice 
and  obedience  to  the  Eingis  Grace,  first  published  in  1571,  will 
show  the  progress  of  his  reflection  upon  the  incident  of  the 
murder.  Finding  that  his  "  Hamilton  "  theory  did  not  fully 
explain  the  murder,  and  hearing  the  false  rumour  that  the 
Queen  had  attempted  to  poison  her  infant  son  at  Stirling, 
Buchanan  plainly  began  to  suspect  Mary  of  the  double  crime, 
and  asociated  Bothwell  with  her  as  an  accomplice. 

Another  circumstance  which  must  have  weighed  with  Buchanan 
in  turning  him  against  the  Queen  was  the  outspoken  animosity 
of  his  chief  the  Earl  of  Lennox,  and  of  Mary's  kinswoman,  the 
Countess  of  Lennox,  against  their  daughter-in-law.  Here  the 
clanship  influence  became  predominant.  As  a  vassal,  it  was  no 
part  of  Buchanan's  duty  to  question  the  wisdom  of  his  chief;  it 
was  his  to  make  no  reply,  but  to  devote  all  his  literary  powers  to- 
wards the  avenging  of  the  murder  of  his  young  master.  It  is 
net  necesary  to  suppose  that  a  bribe  was  offered  to  purchase  his 
pen.  For  Buchanan  it  was  enough  that  his  dream  of  Darnley's 
kingly  position  had  been  dispelled,  and  it  was  his  duty  to  save 
Darnley's  son — his  own  possible  chief — from  the  dangers  that 
G 


82  Buchanan  and  Mary 

threatened.  He  believed  that  could  best  be  done  by  proving 
that  the  Queen  had  consented  to  the  murder  of  Darnley,  and  was 
therefore  no  fit  person  to  be  entrusted  with  the  care  of  Darnley's 
son.  Here  the  Republican  notions  which  he  had  suppressed 
during  his  personal  intimacy  with  Mary  broke  forth  in  full  force. 
His  Detect/ioitn  of  the  Doingis  of  Marie,  Qtiene  of  Scots,  as 
the  first  translation  of  his  Latin  pamphlet  is  called,  was  an 
attempt  to  vindicate  the  deposition  of  the  Queen  as  a  murderess 
and  adulteress,  and  plainly  claims  the  right  to  remove  such  a 
ruler  from  power.  By  a  strange  and  wilful  blindness,  Buchanan 
did  not  see  that  he  was  confuted  by  his  own  arguments.  If  Mary 
should  be  removed  with  violence  because  of  murder  and  adultery, 
then  surely  Darnley,  the  murderer  of  Riccio  and  one  of  the 
worst  libertines  in  a  dissolute  Court  was  equally  worthy  of  death. 
But  the  Earl  of  Lennox  thought  differently,  and  Buchanan 
followed  his  chief.  Without  agreeing  with  Mr.  Hosack  in  his 
denunciation  of  Buchanan  as  ' '  the  prince  of  literary  prosti- 
tutes," or  believing,  with  him,  that  Buchanan,  was  "  first  the 
sycophant  and  then  the  slanderer  of  his  Sovereign,  his  pen  was 
ever  at  the  service  of  the  highest  bidder,"  one  may  admit  that 
there  is  some  truth  in  Hosack's  remark  that  "  Nothing  can  be 
more  finished  than  some  of  his  laudatory  verses  upon  Mary ; 
nothing  can  be  more  ridiculous  than  the  gross  exaggerations  of 
the  '  Detection.'  "  These,  after  all,  are  merely  further  proofs  that 
perfect  consistency  is  not  to  be  expected  from  any  human  being. 
The  marriage  of  Mary  and  Francis,  the  Dauphin  of  France, 
took  place  at  Paris  in  January,  1558-9.  At  that  time  Buchanan 
was  tutor  to  the  son  of  the  Marechal  de  Brissac,  and  was  pro- 
bably in  Paris ;  indeed,  it  has  been  asserted  that  some  of  the 
inscriptions  on  the  wedding-banners  were  written  by  him.  His 
famous  Epithalnmiiim  while  extolling  the  bold  and  hardy 
Scottish  race,  revives  the  memory  of  the  traditional  alliance  with 
France  which  dated  from  the  time  of  Charlemagne ;  and  claims 
that  the  Scots  had  ever  maintained  their  freedom :  — 

So  was  it,  when  of  old  oach  land, 
A  proy  to  every  spoiler's  hand, 
Its  anoiont  laws  and  rulers  lost, 
The  Scot  alone  oould  freedom  boast  ! 
The  Goth,  the  Saxon,  and  the  Dane 
Poured  on  the  Scot  tlioir  powers  in  vain  ; 
And  the  proud  Norman  met  a  foe 
Who  gavo  him  eijual  blow  fur  blow. 


Buchanan  and  Mary  83 

At  this  period  Buchanan  was  a  supporter  of  Catholicism.  In  a 
few  years  he  returned  to  Scotland,  joined  the  Protestant  party, 
and  did  his  best  to  break  up  the  French  Alliance  which  he  had 
so  strongly  commended.  When  Buchanan's  name  next  appears 
in  connection  with  Mary,  in  January  1561-2,  she  was  a  young 
widow  on  her  ancestral  Scottish  throne,  and  he  was  acting  as  her 
tutor,  reading  Livy  with  her  daily,  as  Randolph,  the  English 
resident  at  the  Scottish  Court,  declares.  It  was  quite  natural 
that  Mary  should  be  attracted  towards  Buchanan,  though  he 
was  then  over  fifty-five  years  old,  and  somewhat  ill-favoured. 
Buchanan  had  long  been  in  touch  with  the  best  literary  circles 
of  France  and  Italy ;  he  could  discourse  upon  literature,  ancient 
and  modern,  could  write  graceful  and  complimentary  verses  to 
the  Queen  and  her  Four  Maries,  and  supplied  a  link  with  her 
happy  early  days  in  France.  Her  own  poetic  gifts,  inherited 
from  her  ancestor,  James  I.,  were  not  to  be  despised,  even  when 
some  of  the  poems  wrongly  assigned  to  her  are  deducted.  French 
was  the  language  of  her  childhood,  and  she  learned  Italian  at 
the  Court  of  Katherine  de  Medici,  and  could  indite  verses  in 
both  tongues,  while  Latin  was  familiar  to  her.  It  has  been 
suggested  that,  at  a  later  date,  the  secret  of  Bothwell's  success 
with  Mary  was  his  knowledge  of  French  literature  and  customs. 
Buchanan,  therefore,  could  take  a  much  wider  range,  and  from 
the  literary  side  was  more  desirable  than  the  bold  Earl. 
Certainly,  Buchanan  was  on  the  best  of  terms  with  the  Queen 
and  Court. 

It  has  been  urged  against  Buchanan  that  he  was  a  mercenary 
poet,  measuring  out  his  lines  according  to  the  gold  paid  for 
them.  This  accusation  is  hardly  fair.  He  certainly  wrote 
begging  poems;  but  so  did  Dunbar  to  James  IV.,  and  Sir  David 
Lyndesay  to  James  V.  It  was  the  fashion  of  the  time;  and,  in- 
deed, the  formal  Dedications  of  books,  which  survived  till  the 
beginning  of  last  century,  were  simply  a  dignified  form  of 
begging. 

Two  emotions  acted  upon  Buchanan  when  he  wrote  his  poem 
on  the  baptism  of  James  VI.  in  December,  1566, — his  respect  for 
the  Queen,  and  his  feudal  duty  to  the  infant  grandson  of  his 
chief,  the  Earl  of  Lennox.  These  feelings  had  already  brought 
forth  his  more  impassioned  poem  on  the  birth  of  that  Prince,  in 
which  he  plainly  declared  the  duty  of  the  King  as  the  ensample 
to  his  people.       But  the  finest  and  best  known  of  Buchanan's 


84  Buchanan  and  Mary 

poems  addressed  to  Queen  Mary  is  the  dedication  which  he  pre- 
fixed to  his  Latin  version  of  the  Psalms  of  David,  the  first  edition 
of  which  was  printed  in  Paris  about  1565.  The  opening  lines 
and  the  expressive  translation,  by  Dr.  Hutchison,  Rector  of  the 
High  School,  Glasgow,  are  as  follows  :  — 

Nympha,  Caledoniae  quae  nunc  felioitor  orae 

Missa  per  innumeros  sceptra  tueris  avos  ; 
Quae  sortem  antevenis  meritis,  virtutibua  annos, 

Sexum  animis,  morum  nobilitate  genus, 
Accipe  (sed  facilis)  oultu  donata  Latino 

Carmina,  fafcidici  nobile  regis  opus. 

0  Lady  of  an  ancient  race. 

Who  Scotia's  throne  dost  nobly  grace, 

Surpassing  by  thy  merits  great 

Thy  royal  dignity  of  state  : 

Thy  virtues  far  beyond  thy  years, 

Thy  mind  above  all  woman's  spheres, 

And  high  as  is  thy  royal  birth, 

How  far  beneath  thy  native  worth  ! 

Accept  the  noble  gift  I  bring — 

The  Psalms  of  Israel's  prophet-king 

Set  forth  in  numbers  erewhile  sung 

By  masters  of  the  Latin  tongue. 

No  polished  odes  from  Grecian  hand 

Expect  from  this  far  northern  land. 

Yet  ventured  I  not  to  disdain 

The  puny  offspring  of  my  brain  : 

Since  thou  hast  pleasure  found  in  these 

My  versos,  me  they'll  not  displease. 

But  though  scant  praise  bestowed  be 

On  graces  of  my  poetry. 

My  verses  still  perchance  will  show 

How  much  to  a  kind  heart  they  owe. 

Buchanan  was  not  allowed  to  go  unrewarded  for  his  literary 
labours  at  the  Court  of  Queen  Mary,  though  the  poet — as  is 
often  the  case  with  members  of  that  irritable  genus — died  in 
poverty.  If  he  sold  his  pen  to  the  highest  bidder,  as  some  of 
his  detractors  assert,  and  betrayed  the  Queen  who  had  be- 
friended him,  then  the  price  of  his  treachery  was  little  profitable 
to  him.  Whether  ho  assisted  John  Wood  in  "  faking  the  Casket 
Letters  "  cannot  definitely  be  known,  though  he  certainly  had  a 
share  in  preparing  the  so-called  evidence  against  the  Queen. 
These  later  years  of  Buclianan's  lifo  avo  not  attractive  to  some 
people.     More  pleasant,  however,  is  it  to  remember  the  learned 


Buchanan  and  Mary  85 

"  Scot  abroad  "  writing  verses  to  the  young  Dauphiness  in  Paris ; 
or  to  picture  the  middle-aged  scholar  at  St.  Andrews,  with  his 
queenly  pupil,  now  deeply  engaged  in  the  study  of  Latin  history, 
and  anon  gaily  capping  verses  with  each  other,  and  grinding 
gerunds  and  irregular  verbs  into  the  form  of  epigrammatic  gems 
that  have  retained  their  lustre  till  the  present  day. 

A.  H.  M. 


IX. 

George  Buchanan  and  Crossraguel  Abbey. 

In  the  muniments  pertaining  to  the  Abbey  of  Crossraguel,  most 
of  which  are  in  the  Charter  Chest  of  the  Marquis  of  Ailsa  at 
Culzean,  and  were,  through  the  courtesy  of  that  nobleman,  re- 
produced twenty  years  ago  in  the  publications  of  the  Ayrshire 
and  Galloway  Archaeological  Association  (an  association  now, 
alas !  defunct),  there  are  several  references  to  George  Buchanan. 
There  is  no  evidence  that  he  ever  resided  in  that  Ayrshire  mon- 
astery, but  he  was,  as  he  styles  himself,  "  Pensionarius  de  Cross- 
raguel," and  was  practically  owner  of  it.  It  was  in  the  year 
1564  that  Queen  Mary  rewarded  his  great  literary  attainments, 
and  personal  services  to  her,  by  this  gift.  The  document 
conferring  it  is  interesting,  and  may  be  quoted  in  full :  — 

"  Ane  Lettre  maid  to  Maistre  George  Buchquhannane,  for  all 
the  dayis  of  his  liflfe,  of  the  Gift  of  an  zeirlie  pensionne  of  the 
sowme  of  fyve  hundreth  pundis  usuale  money  of  this  realme,  to 
be  zeirlie  uptakiu  be  him,  his  factoris  and  servitouris  in  his 
name,  at  twa  termes  in  the  zeir,  Whitsounday  and  Martimes  in 
Winter,  be  equale  portionis,  of  the  reddiest  fruittis  and  emoli- 
mentis  of  the  Abbay  of  Corsragwell  now  vacand  and  being  in  hir 
Majesties  handis  throw  the  deceis  of  umquhile  Master  Quintene 
Kennedie  last  abbot  thairof.  And  for  payment  of  the  said 
zeirlie  pensioun,  assigns  to  him  the  haill  temporalitie  of  the  said 
Abbay,  with  the  place,  manss,  orchardis,  mains,  woodis,  coil- 
licuchis,  and  the  pertinentis  quhatsumevir  pertaining  thairto : 
with  power  to  him  to  set  and  rais  the  said  temporalitie,  outputt 
and  imputt  the  tcunentis  thairof,  and  otherwise  to  use  the  samyn 
als  frelie  and  in  all  sortis  as  the  said  umquhile  abbote  mycht 
have  in  his  liftymc.  And  gife  the  samyn  sail  not  be  fundin 
sufficient  and  oiuiuch  for  zeirlie  payment-  of  the  same  soume  of 
fyve  hvmdrcth  poundis,  in  that  case  hir  Majestie  assignis  to 
him  sa  meklc  as  he  sail  iulaik  of  the  said  temporalitie,  of  the 


George  Buchanan  and  Crossraguel  Abbey       87 

reddiest  teyndis  and  fruitis  of  the  spiritualitie  of  the  said 
Abbaye,  viz.,  of  the  Kirkis  of  Girvane  and  Kirkoswald  belang- 
and  thairto.     And  that  the  said  Lettre,  etc. 

"  At  Halirud  hous  the  nynt  days  of  Octobre  the  zeir  of  God, 
M.Vc  Lxiv.  zeris." 

But  George  Buchanan,  or  "  his  factoris  and  servitouris," 
never  saw  much  of  the  money  involved  here.  Their  first  trouble 
was  with  the  Earl  of  Cassilis,  the  head  of  the  great  house  of 
Kennedy,  whose  relationship  with  the  Abbey  was  close,  not  only 
through  his  maternal  descent  from  the  Earl  of  Carrick,  who 
founded  it,  and  because  the  last  two  Abbots,  William  and 
Quentin,  were  nearly  related  to  him,  but  because  his  territory 
lay  all  around  it,  and 

' '  From  Wigtown  to  the  toun  of  Ayr, 
Portpatrick  to  the  cruives  of  Cree, 
Man  need  not  think  for  to  bide  there 
Unless  he  court  with  Kennedie." 

Buchanan  was  well  acquainted  with  this  family.  He  had  been 
tutor  for  several  years  to  Earl  Gilbert,  resided  with  him  in  Paris 
for  some  time,  and  later  dwelt  under  his  roof  in  Ayrshire,  where 
he  wrote  the  Somnium.  Buchanan  had  a  high  opinion  of  this 
nobleman — he  died  in  1558  on  his  way  home  from  the  marriage 
of  Mary  with  the  Dauphin,  under  strong  suspicion  of  having 
been  poisoned  by  the  Guises — and  now  it  was  his  son  he  had  to 
contend  with  for  the  payment  of  his  income.  On  October  16th, 
1564,  he  brought  an  action  or  "  complaint"  against  him  before 
the  Privy  Council,  and  won  his  case.  We  give  here  the 
"  Order"  in  his  favour,  a  document  interesting  in  itself,  apart 
from  its  connection  with  George  Buchanan  :  — 

"  Apud  Edinburgh,  xvj  Octobris,  anno  M.Vc  Lxiiijo 
Sederunt :  Jacobus  Moravie  Comes,  Archibaldus 
Ergadie  Comes,  Jacobus  Comes  de  Mortoun  Cancellarius 
Joannes  Atholie  Comes,  Patricius  dominus  Ruthven, 
Secretarius,  Thesaurarius,  Clericus  Registri,  Clericus 
Justiciarie,  Advocatus. 

The  quhilk  day,  anent  the  complaint  maid  be  Maister  George 
Buchquhannan,  makand  mentioun  that  quhair  he  hes  be  gift  of 
our  Sovrane  Lady  for  all  the  dayis  of  his  lyff,  ane  yeirlie 
pensioun  of  the  soum  of  Vc  li  to  be  yeirlie  uptaken 
of    the     frutis     and     emolumentis    of     the     Abbay     of     Cors- 


88       George  Buchanan  and  Crossraguel  Abbey 

ragwell,  and  for  payment  thairof  thair  is  assignit    to    him    the 
haill  temporalitie  of  the  said  Abbay  with  the  place,  mams,  wod, 
and  pertinentis  thairof;    nevertheles,   Gilbert,   Earl  of  Cassihs 
hes,  sen  the  deceis  of  the  last  Abbot  of  Corsragwell,  entirit  with- 
in the  place  and  abbay  thairof,  withholdis,  and  on  na  wayis  will 
deliver  the  samyn  to  the  said  Maister  George,    without    he    be 
compellit,  lyke  as  at  mair  lenth  is  contendit  in  the  said  com- 
plaint.    The  saidis  Erie  of  Cassilis  and  Maister    George    com- 
perand  bayth  personallie,  the  Loidis  of  Secreit  Counsall  ordanis 
lettres  to  be  direct  simpliciter  to  charge  the  said  Gilbert  Earl  of 
Cassilis  to  deliver  the  said  abbay  and  place  of  Crosragwell,  with 
the  orchartis  and  yardis  thairof,  to  the  said  Maister  George,  or 
ony  in  his  name  havand  his  power  in  his  name  to    ressave   the 
samyn  within  six  dayis  nixt  eftir  the  charge,  undir  the  pane  of 
rebellioun :  and  gif  he  failze,  the  said  six  dayis  being  bipast,  to 
put  him  to  the  home.     And  as  to  the  remanent  pointis  of  the 
said  complaint,  referris  the  samyn  to  the  decisioun  of  the  Lordis 
of  Counsal  and  Sessioun ;    ordinand  the  said  Maister  George  to 
persew  befoir  thame  or  uther  ordiner  jugeis  as  he  thinkis  caus." 
But  soon  another  trouble  emerged  for  Buchanan,  for  in  July 
1565  Queen  Mary,  in  all  likelihood  annoyed  at  his  Protestant- 
ism— by  this  time  he  was  a    regular    member    of    the    General 
Assembly  and  on  important  Committees  there — revoked  her  deed 
of  gift  by  handing  over  Crossraguel  to  Allan  Stewart,  the  son  or 
younger  brother  of  James  Stewart  of  Cardonald,  a  stout  adherent 
of  hers,  and  of  her  mother,  the  Queen  Dowager,  before  her.    She 
styles  him  in  her  deed  "  our  lovit  clerk,  Maistre  Allan  Stewart," 
and  though  he  is  generally  spoken  of  as  the    Commendator    of 
Crossraguel,  it  is  also  correct  to  speak  of  him  as  the  Abbot.     He 
was  not  a  layman,  but  a  priest,  and  his  Abbacy  was  confirmed 
by  the  Archbishop  of  St.  Andrews  as  Primate  and  Legate,  and 
further  ratified  by  the  Pope  himself,  Pius  V.     Still  the  grant 
from  the  Queen  was  purely  secular,  and  might  with  equal  eflfect 
have  been  made  to  a  layman  in  romiDendaiit.  We  need  not  say  any- 
thing further  about  this  Commendator  or  Abbot,  except  that  he 
appears  to  have  been  a  somewhat  cantankerous  man,  and  very 
anxious  to  turn  as  much  of  his  property  as  possible  into  ready 
cash.     He  was  at  daggers  drawn  with  the  Earl  of  Cassilis,  who 
somehow  the  very  next  year  obtained  a  lease  of  the  Abbey  from 
the  Quoou  and  Daruloy,  and  the  bickerings  between  the  Abbot 
and  the  Earl  led  to  the   roasting   of   the   former    in    the   Black 


George  Buchanan  and  Crossraguel  Abbey       SO 

Vault  of  Dunure,  a  method  of  torture  adopted  by  the  Earl  to 
get  the  Abbot  to  sign  certain  documents.  Curiously  enough 
Buchanan  himself  was  in  danger  of  "  roasting"  or  other  rough 
treatment  from  this  ghoulish  lord  of  Carrick,  for  in  the  narrative 
of  "The  Imprisonment  and  Rescue  of  Abbot  Allan  from 
Dunure  "  in  Bannatyne's  Mcmoriales,  we  read  that  when  the 
Privy  Council  took  the  matter  up  and  came  to  a  decision  they 
"  ordained  and  commanded  Gilbert  Erie  Cassilis  to  find  cautione 

and  sovertie that  he  or  none  that  he  may  lett,  sail  invaid, 

molest,  nor  persew  the  said  Mr  Allans  Stewart  in  his  bodie ;  nor 
yit  meddle  or  intromett  with  his  place  and  leving  of  Crosraguell, 
or  uptak  the  fructis  rentis  proffeitis  or  dewiteis  therof  otherwayis 
nor  be  ordour  of  law  and  iustice  under  the  paine  of  two  thow- 
sand  pundis.  And  also  ordained  the  said  Erie  to  find  the  lyk 
cautione  and  sovertie,  and  under  the  same  paine,  to  Mr.  George 
Buchquhanuan  pensioner  of  Crosraguell,  being  personallie 
present,  and  cravit  the  same  alsweile  for  his  awin  persone  as  his 
pensione." 

The  disposal  of  the  Abbey  to  Allan  Stewart  placed  Buchanan 
in  a  very  awkward  position,  and  he  thought  the  best  way  out  of 
the  diiSculty  would  be  to  compromise  with  Stewart  for  a  yearly 
payment  of  £500,  which  was  agreed  to.  But  it  does  not  appear 
that  this  payment  was  ever  made.  Doubtless,  as  a  means  of 
securing  it,  he  assigned  his  rights  in  the  property  to  the  Earl  of 
Cassilis  on  the  Earl  agreeing  to  pay  him  980  marks.  That  a 
portion  of  that  was  paid  is  evident  from  a  Discharge  dated  12th 
September  1569  in  which  we  read:  "Be  it  kend  till  all  men  be 
thir  present  lettres  the  Maister  George  Buchquhannan,  pensioner 
of  Crossraguel  to  half  tane  and  ressavit  fra  ane  nobill  and  potent 
Lord,  Gilbert  Earle  of  Cassilis,  ....  the  soume  of  three 
hundreth  merkis  usual  money  of  Scotland  in  part  payment "  etc. 
But  in  order  to  get  more  of  the  actual  cash  due  him,  Buchanan 
must  have  sent  a  complaint  to  the  Government,  or  at  least  applied 
to  those  high  in  authority,  for  we  read  in  a  document  of  1572 — 
a  letter  of  the  Earl  of  Mar,  Regent  of  the  Kingdom,  to  the  Earl 
of  Cassilis — "  farder  we  pray  your  Lordship  to  remember  Maister 
George  Buchanan,  and  to  bring  with  you  sumquhat  for  his  satis- 
faction of  his  pensioun."  The  Earl  of  Cassilis,  though  he  had 
fought  at  Langside  for  Queen  Mary  and  was  ' '  put  under  waird" 
for  it,  was  now  a  warm  adherent  of  the  Regent's  party.  This 
party  was  now  somewhat  depressed — the  Castle  of  Edinburgh 


90       George  Buchanan  and  Crossraguel  Abbey 

and  many  other  strongholds  being  in  the  hands  of  the  Queen's 
forces — and  the  Regent  Mar  writes  the  above  letter  from  Leith 
beseeching  the  Carrick  Earl  to  come  to  his  aid  as  speedily  as 
possible.  Whether  he  brought  with  him  a  sum  of  money  for 
George  Buchanan,  history  sayeth  not.  Eventually  Buchanan 
sold  the  pension  to  the  Laird  of  Bargany  for  the  annual  sum  of 
£400.  He  would  be  glad  to  be  relieved  of  the  trouble  and 
expense  of  collecting  it.  It  had  been  pretty  much  of  a  white 
elephant  to  him.  The  grant  originally  might  seem  a  splendid 
one,  for  the  Abbey  of  St.  Mary,  Crossraguel,  was  a  great  regality 
extending  over  eight  parishes,  with  temporalities  such  as  farms 
on  the  banks  of  the  Girvan  and  the  Doon,  salmon-fishings, 
collieries  ("  coalheughs  "  and  "coal-pottis  "),  multures,  brewings 
("  brewlands "  and  "brew-houses"),  timber  sales  ("wood- 
hags,"  i.e.,  annual  wood  cuttings),  and  spiritualities  such  as 
teinds  and  other  revenues  accruing  from  ecclesiastical  dues ;  but 
the  upheaval  of  the  Reformation  and  the  greed  of  the  nobles — 
with  much  local  turbulence,  especially  in  the  "  Kingdom  of 
Carrick,"  to  which  the  long  arm  of  the  law  scarcely  reached — 
left  uncommonly  little  of  this  rich  heritage  for  poor  George 
Buchanan. 

K.  H. 


X. 

Knox  and  Buchanan :  a  Study  in  Method, 

Excluding  from  our  view  the  work  of  Knox  and  Buchanan  as 
writers  of  history  and  political  theorists,  we  find  that  Knox's 
life  still  remains  full  of  matter,  but  that  of  his  great  contempor- 
ary Buchanan  is  comparatively  uneventful  and  quiescent.  The 
activity  of  Knox  was  indeed  essentially  religious.  If  he 
travelled  into  the  sphere  of  historical  and  political  discussion, 
it  was  only  as  an  interlude.  His  History,  and  his  First  Blast 
of  the  Trumpet  are  alike  parerga.  His  serious  preoccupation 
from  the  first  was  the  formulation  and  dispersion  of  what  he 
deemed  to  be  sound  doctrine.  Three  things  he  considered  to  be 
utterly  corrupt  in  Scotland, — the  preaching  of  the  Word,  the 
administration  of  the  Sacraments,  and  the  regulation  of  morals 
through  Church  discipline.  The  testimony  of  unbiassed  wit- 
nesses bears  out  his  judgment  in  this  respect.  Preaching  was 
well-nigh  extinct.  The  Sacraments  were  buried  under  a  weight 
of  base  and  avaricious  customs.  The  morals  of  the  clergy  and 
people  were  alike  licentious.  In  the  Scots  Confession,  we  can 
trace  Knox's  hand  at  many  points,  but  at  none  more  certainly 
than  where,  in  describing  the  true  Catholic  Church,  the  Confession 
boldly  abandons  the  conventional  "notes"  of  Unity,  Holiness, 
and  the  like,  and  substitutes  the  triad  of  a  pure  gospel,  sacra- 
ments, and  discipline.  In  such  a  statement  we  may  see  revealed 
the  broad  lines  of  Knox's  purposes  and  methods  as  a  religious 
reformer.  His  great  aim  was  to  cleanse  the  morals  of  Scotland. 
Knowing  how  vain,  for  that  end,  any  merely  civic  or  political 
movements  must  prove,  he  put  these  in  the  background.  It  is 
probable  that  he  even  regretted  his  former  incursion  into  the 
sphere  of  political  argument,  which  had  rather  prejudiced  than 
helped  the  Reformation.  What  he  had  truly  at  heart  was  to 
secure  such  free  and  Scriptural  presentation  of  the  truths  of 
religion,  as  would  raise  his  countrymen  out  of  the  slough  of  error 


92         Knox  and  Buchanan  :  a  Study  in  Method 

in  opinions  and  corruption  in  morals  for  which  the  Scot  was 
notorious.  It  is  not  with  him  primarily  a  question  of  intel- 
lectual enlightenment,  but  rather  of  spiritual  and  moral  re- 
generation. The  religious  passion  which  marked  his  utterances 
is  moved  by  moral  obliquities,  rather  than  by  literary  or  political 
solecisms.  His  methods  were  accordingly  levelled  to  the 
capacity  of  the  general  mind  and  heart. 

It  is  as  a  great  preacher  of  righteousnesss  that  Knox  stands 
out  most  clearly  after  1560.  As  a  theologian,  his  acquirements 
were  not  small,  and  he  had  profited  by  personal  intercourse  with 
Calvin  and  other  leading  thinkers.  When  time  permitted,  he 
could  draft  a  dogmatic  monograph  as  well  as  most;  in  illustra- 
tion, we  have  only  to  refer  to  his  work  on  Predestination.  But 
neither  his  time  nor  his  inclination  led  him  to  do  the  task  of 
the  systematic  theologian :  it  is  possible  also  that  the  great  spirit 
of  Calvin  overshadowed  him  here ;  for  close  contact  with  experts 
often  breeds  a  disinclination  to  venture  into  their  special  fields. 
But  as  a  preacher  of  doctrines  which  both  Calvin  and  he  found 
in  Scripture  and  in  human  nature,  Knox  stands  unrivalled. 
To  this  vocation  he  was  loudly  summoned  by  his  natural 
temperament  and  by  the  needs  of  his  time.  The  orator  stood 
confessed  in  him  who  had  borne  the  sword  for  Wishart,  who  had 
burst  into  tears  when  called  to  preach  in  the  Castle  of  St. 
Andrews,  and  who  to  the  last  bade  fair  to  "  ding  the  pulpit  in 
blads  and  flee  out  of  it."  For  such  a  man,  publicity,  utterance, 
vehement  passion,  were  a  necessity.  The  scholar's  patient  toil 
among  ideas,  calmly  neglectful  of  the  popular  passion  and  bid- 
ing his  time  in  a  future  age,  would  never  have  contented  Knox. 
tlis  nature  was  thrilling  at  all  times  to  the  contemporary 
emotions ;  and  he  found  a  needed  vent  for  his  pent-up  fires  in 
the  pulpit.  It  may  be  true  that  his  sermons  at  last  became 
political  forces;  certainly,  he  never  shrank  from  preaching  "to 
the  times  " ;  but  in  their  fundamental  motive  they  had  the 
didactic  and  practical  ends  of  a  Christian  preacher.  If  he 
appeared  to  have  a  hand  in  State  «ffairs,  it  was  as  one  who 
represented  no  party  or  cabal,  b^t  the  eternal  righteousness 
founded  on  the  Word  of  God. 

The  accidental  influence  of  Knox  on  political  events  may  be 
seen  in  the  fact  that,  more  than  once,  he  was  surprised  by  the 
effect  of  his  own  words.  lie  was  not  conscious  of  overstepping 
the  limits  of  the  pulpit  and  the  religious  censor.     In  his  inter- 


JOHN   KNOX. 
(From  the  biM  hi    Wallace  Monument.) 


Bij  hind  permt'sHnn  of  Mr.  Witlimn  Middleton,  Curator,  Wallace  Monument. 


Knox  and  Buchanan  :  a  Study  in  Method         93 

views  with  Mary,  we  always  note  a  certain  ingenuous  inability 
to  understand  why  the  Queen  should  take  umbrage.  In  ecclesi- 
astical politics,  Knox's  aloofness  and  even  inexperience  may  be 
seen  in  such  a  clumsy  arrangement  as  the  Concordat  of  Leith. 
Such  a  scheme  betrays  a  prentice  hand.  Knox's  real  strength 
lay  not  in  administration  or  in  the  moulding  of  political  forces 
for  a  Churchly  end,  else  the  history  of  the  Scottish  Church  would 
have  run  far  otherwise ;  but  in  the  application  of  a  Bible  system 
of  doctrine,  worship,  and  discipline  to  the  disorganised  religious 
life  of  Scotland.  There  were  others  who  did  the  work,  some- 
times very  shady  and  disreputable,  of  Scottish  statecraft  and 
churchcraft,  as  these  crafts  then  obtained.  Knox  ought  to  be 
cleared  of  complicity  in  their  "  knaivish  tricks,"  and  he  cannot 
claim  all  the  credit  of  their  occasional  successes.  For  him,  the 
one  great  office  to  be  coveted  and  filled  was  that  of  being  the 
voice  of  the  Righteous  God  resounding  in  the  wilderness  of 
Scottish  faith  and  morals. 

Confronted  with  Buchanan,  Knox  bulks  in  popular  life  as  a 
figure  overtopping  the  Scottish  humanist.  It  is  hardly  possible 
to  represent  Buchanan  as  a  religious  reformer  in  the  same  sense 
as  Knox.  For  Buchanan  declined  the  battle  of  the  Church,  and 
subsided  into  literary  and  philosophic  pursuits,  varied  by  the 
exercise  of  a  considerable  poetic  talent.  Buchanan  has  no  history 
as  a  theologian  or  as  a  religious  teacher.  Politically  and  philo- 
sophically he  stood  on  the  same  ground  as  Knox ;  but  his 
temperament  restricted  him  to  fields  of  study  and  taste.'  He 
made  no  profound  mark  on  the  religious  life  of  Scotsmen.  He 
came  back  to  his  native  land  as  soon  as  it  was  safe  for  him  to  do 
so,  and  casting  in  his  lot  with  the  Reformers  he  accepted  such 
administrative  work  as  was  offered  him.^  He  sat  in  General 
Assemblies,  and  even  presided  over  the  Assembly  of  1567,  lay- 
man as  he  was.  But  to  be  Moderator  of  the  Assembly  did  not 
necessarily  mean  absolute  importance  in  the  Church's  counsels, 
either  then  or  now.     Rather,  a  quiet  and  safe  man  was  chosen, 

'  Compare  Hume  Brown's  Biography,  p.  191.  In  method  and  discretion 
Buchanan  seemed  to  stand  on  an  entirely  dififerent  footing  in  the  country 
from  Knox  and  the  ministers  of  the  congregation, — "  they  were  reformers 
and  nothing  else." — Ed. 

^  "  Buchanan  approved  of  the  same  cause  ;  but  he  had  other  interests,  and 
the  memory  of  a  life  behind  him  which  made  genial  intercourse  possible  with 
those  who  differed  most  widely  from  himself  on  the  deepest  questions." — 
Hume  Brown's  Biography,  p.  191. 


94        Knox  and  Buchanan  :  a  Study  in  Method 

under  whom  the  stronger  spirits  might  exercise  their  wits.  Al- 
though Buchanan's  name  is  found  also  on  many  Church  com- 
mittees, we  do  not  hear  that  he  was  a  commanding  influence. 
Knox  himself  speaks  of  him  in  terms  which  rather  suggest  a 
kindly  tolerance  of  one  who  was  not  regarded  as  a  very  pro- 
minent ecclesiastic  or  a  very  zealous  worker  in  religion.  "  This 
notable  man  remains,"  he  writes,  "  to  this  day,  in  the  year  of 
God  1556  years,  to  the  great  glory  of  God,  to  the  great  honour 
of  the  nation,  and  to  the  comfort  of  those  who  delight  in  letters 
and  virtue."  It  is  not  so  that  men  describe  a  religious  reformer. 
At  the  same  time,  Buchanan  had  very  early  satisfied  himself 
that  the  position  of  Rome  was  untenable :  he  had  attacked  the 
vices  of  the  monks ;  and  by  the  time  he  finally  returned  home 
from  the  Continent,  he  had  made  a  prolonged  study  of  the 
points  at  issue  between  the  Roman  Church  and  the  Reformers. 
His  decision  was  in  favour  of  the  latter ;  but  it  is  not  in  this 
deliberate  and  intellectual  mode  that  a  Luther  or  a  Knox  is 
made,  and  Buchanan  remained  to  the  last  a  cool  and  dispassion- 
ate critic  of  both  extremes.^  He  took  no  prominent  part  in  the 
organisation  of  the  doctrinal  and  religious  life  of  Scotland.  He 
continued  to  be  a  silent  member  of  the  Reforming  party.  He 
preached  no  rousing  sermon  against  Court  or  Church  iniquities, 
although  a  layman  like  Erskine  of  Dun  was  held  fit  to  be  both 
preacher  and  superintendent.  To  him,  the  Reformation  was  a 
needed  current  helping  on  the  Renaissance,  clearing  away 
debris  which  hindered  sound  learning  from  advancing,  and  over- 
throwing powers  in  Church  and  State  which  frowned  on  freedom 
of  thought. 

It  has  been  suggested  by  some  writers  that  Buchanan's  abstin- 
ence from  special  religious  activities  was  due  to  his  superior 
breadth  and  liberality  of  mind.  He  could  not  be  an  active 
propagandist  in  spheres  with  which  his  scholarly  culture  and 
broad  learning  unfitted  him  to  sympathise.  As  a  Humanist, 
he  loved  freedom  and  gracious  forms  of  culture  more  than  creeds 
or  fervent  religious  expression ;  and  hence  he  avoided  the 
strenuous  tasks  of  men  like  Knox  who  had  to  build  up  Confes- 
sions and  organise  the  Church.  All  this  may  be  accepted  as  an 
'  "  He  was  the  man  to  bo  a  cautions,  judicious  reformer,  not  the  man  to 
bo  an  impetuous  frantic  destroyer,  too  rasb  and  uurcatraiuod  to  discriminate 
botwoon  the  entirely  and  partially  unsound." — Dr.  Campbell  Smith  in  Dr. 
Wallace's  "  (loorge  Buclianan,"  p.  141.  The  aisthetic  was  not  lacking  in 
Buchaiiati,  aa  in  Knox. 


Knox  and  Buchanan  :  a  Study  in  Method         95 

apology  for  Buchanan's  comparative  supineness  as  a  reformer,  if 
it  be  also  remembered  that,  for  his  own  time,  Knox  was  the  man 
who  was  needed,  and  he  chose  the  better  part.  No  doubt, 
temperament  should  be  taken  into  account.  Knox  was  bold, 
impulsive,  and  fond  of  publicity:  Buchanan  was  a  student  and 
a  courtier,  who  preferred  quiet  and  gentle  ways  and  hated  the 
uproars  of  controversy.  But  temperaments  must  not  be  allowed 
to  obscure  the  facts  of  duty  and  patriotic  faith.  Knox  recog- 
nised these  facts  and  faced  them  nobly ;  Buchanan  on  the  whole 
took  them  coolly  and  with  many  grains  of  salt.  He  was  "  of 
good  religion  for  a  poet,"  says  Sir  James  Melville  of  Halhill. 
The  religious  reformer  is  not  made  of  such  stuff.  While 
Buchanan  has  exercised  influence  on  Scottish  literature  and  on 
political  theories,  he  cannot  fairly  be  described  as  a  great  force 
in  the  Scottish  Reformation.  In  his  way,  he  offers  the  Human- 
ist foil  to  Knox,  as  Erasmus  did  to  Luther. 

H.  M.  B.  R. 


XL 

Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher. 

Does  Buchanan  deserve  a  place  among  political  philosophers? — 
was  the  question  I  asked  myself  on  receiving  the  urgent  request  of 
the  editor  to  deal  with  this  subject  in  this  memorial  volume.  On 
reflection,  I  had  no  difficulty  in  answering  the  question  in  the 
affirmative,-  with  certain  reservations.  The  influence  as  well  as  the 
contents  of  his  De  Jure  Hegni  apud  Scotos  amply  justifies  his 
biographers  in  adding  this  to  his  other  claims  to  distinction.  The 
De  Jure  is  one  of  the  few  specimens  of  political  reflection  which  was 
as  popular  with  the  reading  public  of  its  time,  and  for  several 
generations  afterwards,  as  is  to-day  a  volume  of  Scott,  Macaulay,  or 
Carlyle.  It  was,  indeed,  written  in  Latin,  but  it  found  several 
translators,  although  it  ran  into  numerous  editions  in  the  original ; 
and,  whether  in  its  Latin  or  English  form,  it  became,  especially  in 
the  seventeenth  century,  a  Vade  Mecum  to  those  who  in  Scotland 
and  England  were  engaged  in  the  struggle  for  political  rights 
against  the  Stewart  kings.  Mere  popularity  is  not  necessarily  the 
test  of  true  distinction  in  an  author,  but  it  is  at  least  significant  of 
the  influence  of  his  work,  and  from  this  point  of  view  Buchanan 
certainly  merits  a  very  di.stinguished  place  among  writers  who  have 
discussed  the  principles  of  politics.  The  De  Jure  was  an  inspiration 
to  political  action,  as  well  as  a  text-book  of  political  science,  to 
several  generations  of  Scotsmen  and  Englishmen.  It  furnished 
both  Covenanters  and  Puritans  with  theoretic  arguments  in  vindica- 
tion of  the  rights  which  they  defended  or  the  demands  they  made. 
All  through  the  Covenanting  struggle  it  was  quoted  as  a  sort  of 
oracle  by  many  a  strenuous,  though  long-forgotten  pamphleteer, 
and  even  Milton  has  been  accused,  with  exaggeration  no  doubt,  of 
stealing  his  Defence  of  the  People  of  England  from  its  pages. 
On  its  publication  in  1579  it  was  hailed  by  Buchanan's  literary 
friends  both  at  homo  and  abroad  with  enthusiastic  commendations. 
A  still   more  empliatio  ovideiico  of  its  importance  in   the  eyes  of 


Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher  97 

contemporaries  is  the  depreciation  which  it  earned  in  rich  measure 
from  the  champions  of  absolutism.  Its  author  came  in  for  a  liberal 
share  of  vituperation,  as  well  as  refutation,  at  their  hands  throughout 
the  seventeenth  and  well  into  the  eighteenth  century.  Nay,  it 
encountered  the  bitter  hostility  not  only  of  James  VI.,  for  whose 
benefit  it  was  more  particularly  written,  but  of  his  three  successors 
on  the  Scottish  throne  down  to  the  revolution  of  1688.  It  was 
signalled  out  for  condemnation  in  more  than  one  Act  of  the  Scottish 
Parliament  and  Privy  Council  throughout  these  hundred  years,  and 
from  these  Acts  alone  we  might  adduce  sufficient  proof  both  of  the 
eminence  of  its  author  as  a  political  writer  and  the  practical  power 
of  his  work.  If  only  in  view  of  this  fact,  Buchanan  must  be  assigned 
a  place  of  honour  in  every  history  of  modern  political  thought 
alongside  that  of  the  author  of  the  Vindiciae  Contra  Tyrannos, 
with  whom,  in  respect  of  numerous  editions  and  readers,  he  may 
fairly  compete. 

Nevertheless,  his  place  is  not  exactly  beside  that  of  Bodin  or 
Hobbes  or  Montesquieu.  I  have  said  that  I  think  him  entitled 
to  distinction  as  a  political  philosopher, — with  certain  reservations. 
What  reservations?  He  possessed  neither  the  historic  erudition 
nor  the  scientific  spirit  of  Bodin  or  Montesquieu ;  he  had  not  the 
philosophic  penetration  or  depth  (or  for  the  matter  of  that,  the 
sophistry)  of  Hobbes.  Bodin,  and  especially  Montesquieu,  could 
also  rejoice  in  many  editions.  They  were,  like  Buchanan,  widely 
read  and  extensively  quoted,  whilst  Hobbes  sank  into  a  Ion"  and 
undeserved  obscurity.  They,  too,  like  Buchanan,  exerted  in  their 
own  generation  a  powerful  influence  on  political  thought,  even  of 
the  practical  kind.  But  their  greatness  as  political  thinkers  was 
entirely  independent  of  the  factor  of  many  editions  and  readers. 
They  were  great  enough,  in  respect  of  originality  and  profundity, 
to  rank  with  these  giants  of  thought  who,  like  Hobbes  and  Spinoza, 
were  little  read  or  ignored  by  an  unsympathetic  or  conventional 
age.  Like  them,  they  could  afford  to  wait  throughout  the  silence 
and  contempt  of  the  centuries  for  that  recognition  of  real  orandeur 
which  is  sure  to  come  sooner  or  later,  but  which  is  too  often  denied 
to  profound  genius  in  its  own  day.  To  this  kind  of  superlative 
greatness  in  the  domain  of  political  thought  Buchanan  could  lay  no 
claim.  What  he  succeeded  in  doing  was  to  provide  a  theoretic 
vindication  of  the  revolution  of  1567,  which  had  the  fortune  to 
express  in  forcible  language  the  strong  points  of  the  policy  of  a 
certain  party,  and  to  contribute  in  this  way  to  the  assertion  and  the 


98  Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher 

ultimate  triumph  of  the  principles  which  that  party  represented  in 
the  struggle  against  the  impossible  rule  of  Queen  Mary  and  the 
equally  impossible  rule  of  Charles  I.,  Charles  II.,  and  James  VII.' 
This  was,  indeed,  a  notable  achievement,  worthy  of  generous  com- 
memoration, and  Buchanan  is  entitled  to  an  enthusiastic  tribute  for 
the  message  to  Scotland  and  to  humanity  which  enabled  hi  in,  being 
dead,  to  speak  to  generation  after  generation  of  his  struggling 
countrymen.  But  he  was  hardly  an  original  genius  in  political 
speculation.  He  was  indebted  to  others  for  many  of  the  thoughts 
which  he  forcibly  applied  to  the  occasion,  and  which  came  to  him 
from  the  mediseval  thinkers  through  John  Major.  The  schoolmen, 
I  suppose,  he,  as  an  emancipated  humanist,  had  not  the  patience  to 
read,  and  no  sane  mortal,  who  values  his  time  and  hates  mediaeval 
dry-as-dustism,  will  blame  him  for  this  lack  of  patience.  To  Major 
he  seems  to  have  been  more  directly  indebted  for  the  bold  demo- 
cratic ideas  to  which  he  gave  so  fearless  and  trenchant  expression, 
though  it  is  to  be  regretted  that  he  allowed  his  impatience  of  the 
dry-as-dust  lucubrations  of  his  worthy  St.  Andrews  professor  to 
make  him  forget  the  fact  in  his  caustic  pleasantries  at  his  expense. 
His  performance  has  high  merits,  keeping  in  view  the  object  of  it. 
It  made  a  tremendous  and  long-sustained  impression.  It  exposed, 
in  pointed  and  nervous  argument,  the  fallacious  Stuart  assumption 
that  a  people  is  bound  to  obey  a  ruler,  even  if  he  rules  against  its 
interest  and  governs  the  nation  to  ruin,  as  Queen  Mary,  with  her 
impulsive  temperament,  threatened  to  do.  But  to  assert  that  it  did 
more  than  this,  as  some  of  his  panegyrists  do,  is  to  impair  his 
reputation  by  assuming  a  purpose  which  he  himself  would  have 
disowned.  Dr.  Irving,  for  instance,  opines  that  the  Be  Jure  is  "  a 
most  profound  and  masterly  compendium  of  political  philasophy." 
Nay,  it  is  "an  immortal  production."  To  one  who  has  studied 
Machiavelli,  Bodin,  Hobbes,  Montesquieu,  such  judgments  are 
sheer  extravagances.  Moreover,  they  are  unfair  to  Buchanan,  who 
would  only  have  failed  of  his  purpose  had  he  attempted  to  write  a 
compendium  of  political  philosophy,  and  who  was  bent  mainly  on 
showing  the  untenableness  and  the  absurdity  of  the  theory  which 
assumes  that  the  king  is  above  the  law  and  denies  the  right  of  the 
subject  to  call  him  to  account  in  case  of  tyranny.  In  this  purpose 
he  succeeded  admirably,  for  the  De  ,hi,re,  if  not  a  monument  of 
political  speculation,  is  one  of  tlie  most  effective  working  theories 
ever  penned.  He  himself  in  his  pi-efatory  epistle  to  King  James  is 
'  i.e.  .Tames  II,  of  England. 


Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher  99 

careful  to  emphasise  its  practical  character.  "This  treatise,"  he 
says,  "  I  have  sent  you  not  merely  as  a  monitor,  but  also  as  an 
importunate  and  even  impudent  dun,  that  in  this  critical  time  of  life 
it  may  guide  you  beyond  the  rocks  of  flattery,  and  not  only  give  you 
advice,  but  also  keep  you  in  the  road  which  you  so  happily  entered, 
and  in  case  of  any  deviation,  replace  you  in  the  line  of  your  duty." 
In  the  exordium  we  learn  that  his  purpose  was,  further,  to  excul- 
pate his  countrymen  from  the  indignant  aspersions  of  hostile  foreign 
critics  by  setting  forth  the  principles  underlying  the  action  of  the 
revolutionists  of  1567. 

The  De  Jure  bears  evident  traces  of  the  humanist  sympathies  of 
its  author.  It  is  not  only  the  work  of  an  elegant  Latinist ;  it  is 
inspired  by  the  noblest  traditions  of  ancient  liberty.  Buchanan 
might  be  described  as  an  enthusiastic  champion  of  the  political 
rights  of  man,  who,  if  he  borrows  many  of  his  ideas  from  the 
schoolmen,  draws  his  inspiration  largely  from  the  classic  writers. 
He  loves  to  hold  up  the  picture  of  ancient  simplicity  in  the  midst  of 
what  is  to  him  the  tinsel  of  a  modern  court.  His  model  king  is 
taken  from  Claudian,  while  Cicero  and  Seneca,  Plato  and  Aristotle 
supply  him  with  some  of  his  arguments  against  tyrants.  He  thinks 
as  an  ancient,  and  his  thought  is  kindled  by  the  noblest  utterances 
of  the  mighty  literature  which  he  has  assimilated  so  sympathetically. 
And  yet  he  is  sanely  modern.  Unlike  many  of  his  fellow-humanists, 
he  does  not  despise  or  under-rate  the  traditions  and  the  history  of 
his  own  country.  The  legends  of  the  obscure  period  of  Scottish 
history,  in  which  he  believes  too  credulously,  furnish  him  indeed 
with  more  forcible  arguments  against  tyranny  than  even  the  his- 
torians and  philosophers  of  Greece  or  Rome.  He  is  a  humanist,  but 
he  is  a  Scotsman  as  well,  and  he  does  not  deem  it  beneath  his 
dignity  to  cite  Robert  Bruce  as  well  as  Philip  of  Macedon,  or  some 
humble  native  chronicler,  who  wrote  monk  Latin,  as  well  as  Cicero, 
to  prove  that  the  people  is  the  virtual  sovereign  of  the  state. 

The  De  Jure  is  in  some  respects  a  notable  example  of  the 
emancipating  influence  of  the  Renascence  on  political  thought. 
Though  its  author  takes  many  of  his  ideas  from  the  scholastic 
writers  and  cannot,  therefore,  be  regarded  as  an  original  thinker, 
his  horizon  is  by  no  means  bounded  by  the  middle  ages.  Like 
Machiavelli  and  More,  he  has  shaken  himself  free  from  the  baneful 
method  of  looking  at  politics  through  theological  spectacles.  The 
schoolmen  appealed  largely  to  the  Scriptures  and  to  canon  law  in 
their  discussions  of  political  questions.     To  them  the  Bible  was  a 


100  Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher 

text-book  of  political  science  as  well  as  a  revelation.  They  assumed 
that  it  was  the  supreme  arbiter  on  questions  of  politics  as  well  as 
theology,  and  that  history  and  reason  were  subordinate  judges  in 
these  matters.  Even  the  Reformation  did  not  materially  affect  this 
assumption,  and  Protestant  writers  on  politics,  like  the  author  of 
the  Vindiciae  Contra  Tyrannos,  continued  to  draw  their  arguments 
in  favour  of  the  right  of  resisting  a  persecuting  prince  largely  from 
Scripture.  Humanists  like  Machiavelli  and  More,  on  the  other 
hand,  who  wrote  on  politics,  strove  to  emancipate  themselves  from 
the  scholastic  conception  which  saw  in  the  Bible  what  the  Bible 
does  not  profess  to  be — a  criterion  of  political  and  philosophical 
questions.  In  Buchanan,  too,  this  free  tendency  is  very  marked. 
Though,  as  I  have  said,  he  borrowed,  evidently  through  Major,  a 
number  of  ideas  from  the  schoolmen,  he  emancipated  himself  from 
their  narrowness  and  their  pedantry.  Like  them,  indeed,  he  is  not 
a  strictly  scientific  political  thinker  in  the  sense  of  the  more  modern 
historic  school,  of  which  his  contemporary  Bodin  is  the  first  great 
representative.  The  first  part  of  the  De  Jure  is,  for  instance, 
greatly  weakened  by  an  unfortunate  proneness  to  substitute  mere 
analogy  for  scientific  research.  It  is  by  way  of  analogy,  not  of 
historic  investigation,  that  he  reaches  the  institution  of  the  king- 
ship. As  the  human  body,  reasons  he,  is  liable  to  disease,  so  is  the 
body  politic  to  dissolution,  and  to  forestall  this  fate,  it,  like  the 
human  body,  requires  the  care  of  a  physician.  This  is  the  function 
of  the  king.  Hence  the  kingship.  Moreover  the  relation  of  king 
and  people  is  of  the  same  nature  as  that  of  physician  and  patient, 
and  if  we  understand  the  business  of  a  physician,  we  shall  rightly 
know  the  duty  of  a  king.  This  may  be  good  analogy ;  it  is  very 
lame  political  philosophy,  and  in  this  respect  it  must  be  admitted 
that  the  argumentation  of  the  De  Jure  is  not  convincing.  Buchanan, 
in  fact,  does  not,  in  such  reasonings,  carry  us  one  step  beyond  the 
scholastic  habit  of  merely  philosophising  or  moralising  on  politics, 
instead  of  investigating  in  accordance  with  the  historic,  truly 
scientific  method. 

But  this  weakness  is  not  preeminent,  and  as  he  proceeds  he 
displays  the  spirit  of  critical  independence  characteristic  of  Re- 
nascence writers  like  Machiavelli  and  More.  He  gives  full  rein  to 
his  reason,  and  his  reasonings,  though  at  times  savouring  of  mere 
syllogisms,  are  often  acute  and  forcible.  Sjjace  will  not  allow  me 
to  enlarge  on  this  point.  Take,  however,  as  an  example  of  the 
appeal  to  reason,  —the  tendency  to  subject  traditional  political  dogma 


Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher  101 

to  the  test  of  common  sense, — the  query  whether  a  number  of  men, 
in  resolving  to  institute  a  king,  could  ever  have  been  so  mad  as  to 
subject  themselves  to  one  man  with  unlimited  power  to  do  them 
harm  ;  or  take  the  query  why  good  kings  should  resent  the  punish- 
ment of  a  tyrant  any  more  than  a  fraternity  of  craftsmen  that  of  an 
unworthy  member. 

Equally  characteristic  is  the  appeal  to  history.  He  does  not, 
indeed,  systematically  investigate  and  compare  historic  data,  for  his 
purpose  is  not  to  write  a  scientific  treatise  on  politics  like  the 
Republic  of  Bodin,  or  the  Esprit  des  Lois  of  Montesquieu.  But 
he  does  attempt  to  substantiate  his  arguments  by  appeals  to  history, 
and  in  this  respect  he  shows  at  least  that  he  can  discriminate  be- 
tween arguments  based  on  analogy  and  arguments  based  on  historic 
fact.  His  early  Scottish  history  may  be  to  a  certain  extent  fabulous, 
but  he  is  on  the  right  track  when  he  appeals  to  the  old  Scottish 
chronicles  to  strengthen  his  argument  that  the  early  kingship  was 
elective  and  not  hereditary,  and  that  the  power  of  the  king  was 
"circumscribed  and  confined  to  fixed  limits."  And  even  if  we  must 
strike  off  a  good  many  of  the  Celtic  kings  from  that  bulky  list  which, 
in  his  History  of  Scotland,  enables  him  to  boast  of  an  origin  of  the 
Scottish  kingdom  several  centuries  before  Christ,  we  should  not 
forget  that  recent  modern  research  has  tended  to  substantiate  his 
contention  that  the  primitive  kingship  among  the  Celts  (or  among 
the  Teutons  or  other  Aryan  peoples,  for  that  matter)  was,  as  a  rule, 
elective  and  strictly  limited.  As  an  example  of  his  use  of  the 
historic  method,  take  the  following  passage  in  which  he  labours  to 
persuade  Maitland  of  the  truth  of  the  grand  thesis  of  his  work,  viz., 
that  the  king  is  inferior  to  the  law  and,  as  the  maker  of  the  law  and 
the  virtual  sovereign  of  the  state,  is  responsible  to  the  people  :  "  We 
contend  that  the  people,  from  whence  our  kings  derive  whatever 
power  they  claim,  is  paramount  to  our  kings  ;  and  that  the  com- 
monalty has  the  same  jurisdiction  over  them  which  they  have  over 
any  individual  of  the  commonalty.  The  usages  of  all  nations  that 
live  under  legal  kings  are  in  our  favour ;  and  all  states  that  obey 
kings  of  their  own  election  in  common  adopt  the  opinion  that  what- 
ever right  the  people  may  have  granted  to  an  individual,  it  may, 
for  just  reason,  also  re-demand.  For  this  is  an  inalienable  privilege 
that  all  communities  must  have  always  retained.  Accordingly 
Lentulus,  for  having  conspired  with  Catiline  to  overturn  the  re- 
public, was  forced  to  resign  the  praetorship ;  and  the  decemvirs,  the 
founders  of  the  laws,  though  invested  with  the  supreme  magistracy, 


102  Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher 

were  degraded  ;  and  some  Venetian  doges,  and  Chilperic,  King  of  the 
Franks,  after  being  stripped  of  every  imperial  badge,  grew  old  as 
private  persons  in  monasteries ;  and  not  long  ago,  Christian,  king 
of  the  Danes,  ended  his  life  in  prison  twenty  years  after  he  had 
been  dethroned.  Nay,  even  the  dictatorship,  which  was  a  species 
of  despotism,  was  still  subordinate  to  the  power  of  the  people.  .  .  . 
I  could  enumerate  twelve  or  more  of  our  kings,  who,  for  their 
villainy  or  llagitiousness,  wei-e  either  condemned  to  perpetual  im- 
prisonment or  escaped  the  punishment  due  to  their  crimes  by  exile 
or  death.  But  that  none  may  allege  that  I  produce  antique  and 
obsolete  precedents,  if  I  should  mention  the  Calens,  Ewens,  and 
Ferchars,  I  shall  go  back  for  a  few  examples  no  further  than  the 
memory  of  our  fathers.  James  III.  was,  in  a  public  assembly  of 
all  the  orders,  declared  to  have  been  justly  slain  for  his  extreme 
cruelty  to  his  relations,  and  for  the  enormous  turpitude  of  his 
life,"  etc. 

Not  less  suggestive  of  the  humanist  spirit  is  the  absence  of  the 
theological  element  which  mars  the  wearisome  disquisitions  of  the 
schoolmen.  He  does  not  altogether  ignore  the  evidence  of  Scripture. 
Maitland,  for  instance,  appeals  to  the  Bible  as  teaching  that  sub- 
mission is  due  even  to  a  tyrant,  and  instances  Paul  who  commanded 
Christians  to  pray  even  for  such  tyrants  as  Tiberius,  Caligula,  Nero. 
Buchanan  digresses  in  order  to  meet  this  objection.  To  pray  for 
even  a  bad  prince,  retorts  he,  does  not  oblige  us  not  to  resist  him. 
Besides  Paul  (and  Milton  subsequently  borrows  the  argument)  meant 
not  to  inculcate  submission  to  tyranny,  but  to  controvert  the 
extreme  views  of  those  who  denied  that  Christians  owed  allegiance 
to  the  civil  power.  This  might  or  might  not  be  scientific  exegesis. 
It  was  at  all  events  reasonable,  and  Buchanan,  though  he  speaks 
with  reverence  of  the  testimony  of  the  sacred  writers  and  takes 
account  of  it,  evidently  does  not  believe  that  Scripture  gives  any 
conclusive  decision  in  such  matters.  At  any  rate  he  rightly  assumes 
that  it  is  at  the  bar  of  national  history  in  the  first  place,  and 
general  history  in  the  second  place  that  the  true  decision  must  be 
sought,  and  the  De  Jure  deserves  the  merit  of  being  a  skilful  plea 
from  both  these  sources  in  favour  of  limited,  legal  government  as 
against  tyranny. 

Buchanan's  unpardonable  sin,  in  tlie  eyes  of  his  royalist  op- 
ponents, is  his  doctrine  of  tyrannicide.  It  was  this  that  more 
particularly  excited  the  ire  of  James  VI.  and  provoked  the  repeated 
condemnation  of   the  Scottish  Parliament  under   Stuart  auspices. 


Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher  103 

His  teaching  on  this  point  is  indeed  very  explicit,  hut  it  was  not 
intended  to  justify  anarchy  or  assassination.  Buchanan  in  fact  felt 
a  sincere  reverence  for  monarchy,  though  he  had  no  patience  with 
kingly  misgovernment,  or  anything  but  tlie  hottest  indignation  for 
the  slavish  theory  of  divine  right,  irresponsible  rule.  He  extols  a 
good  king,  whom  he  allows  in  some  sort  to  represent  the  divine 
majesty.  He  reveres  his  office,  though  he  dislikes  the  extravagant 
parade  of  royal  pomp,  and  bids  Maitland  reiiieiiiber  the  kings  of 
Macedonia  and  Sparta  who  would  not  appear  at  a  lev^e  "  dressed  in 
idle  show,  like  a  girl's  doll,  in  all  the  colours  of  the  rainbow."  He 
exalts  in  a  passage  of  lofty  eloquence  the  noble  function  of  a  truly 
great  monarch,  who  has  nothing  to  fear  from  subjection  to  the  laws, 
which  he  administers  for  the  people's  interest,  and  gains  thereby  the 
loyalty  and  affection  of  his  suVjjects.  In  contrast  to  this  model 
ruler  he  pictures  the  tyrant,  and,  in  his  insistence  on  the  right  to 
kill  a  tyrant,  he  conceives  a  ruler  who  drives  his  subjects  to  despera- 
tion by  his  oppressions,  and  is,  in  fact,  in  a  state  of  war  with  regard 
to  them.  Granted  the  compact  between  ruler  and  subject,  which 
Buchanan,  like  all  sixteenth  and  seventeenth  century  writers, 
assumes,  its  systematic  encroachment  by  a  king  who  becomes  a 
tyrant  frees  the  people  from  its  obligation.  This  tyrant  then 
becomes  an  enemy,  and  the  people  are  justified  in  waging  vvar  against 
him.  Nay,  even  the  individual  may  kill  him.  His  type  of  tyrant, 
it  must  be  borne  in  mind,  was  evidently  a  Caligula,  a  Nero — that  is, 
an  incorrigible  and  infatuated  oppressor.  Maitland  expostulates  on 
the  dangerous  import  of  this  teaching,  and  adduces  the  evils  of 
anarchy.  Legitimate  kings,  returns  Buchanan,  have  nothing  to  fear 
from  this  doctrine.  "  Besides,"  he  adds,  "  I  here  explain  how  far  our 
power  and  duty  extend  by  law,  but  do  not  advise  the  enforcement 
of  either."  He  was  not,  in  fact,  solely  responsible  for  the  doctrine, 
for  it  had  exponents  in  both  ancient  and  mediaeval  times.  With 
him  tyrannicide  is  the  theoretic  remedy  applicable  to  the  con- 
tingency of  the  flagitious  contravention  of  the  contract  between 
ruler  and  ruled,  as  exemplified  by  a  Nero,  a  Caligula.  In  such  a 
case,  the  nation  being  in  a  state  of  war,  the  sooner  the  tyrant  is 
despatched  the  better.  The  party  which  Buchanan  championed  had 
at  all  events  stopped  short  at  the  deposition  of  their  queen,  and 
James  VI.  need  not  have  felt  his  life  or  his  throne  in  jeopardy 
because  his  old  tutor  taught  that  a  Nero  or  a  Caligula  might 
legitimately  be  put  to  death  by  an  outraged  people.  The  modern 
dogma  of  the  responsibility  of  ministers  might  have  suggested  a 


104  Buchanan  as  a  Political  Philosopher 

safer  and  an  equally  effective  mode  of  procedure.  The  idea  does  not 
seem  to  have  suggested  itself  to  him,  for  in  this  matter  his  mind 
moved  more  in  the  realm  of  ancient  than  of  modern  thought. 

A  word  in  conclusion  on  the  general  tendency  of  the  work  as 
indicative  of  the  moral  and  mental  elevation  of  the  writer.  No  one 
can  read  it  without  being  thrilled  by  the  fine  spirit  of  independence, 
the  glowing  appreciation  of  political  liberty,  the  hatred  of  injustice, 
the  dislike  of  courtly  sycophancy,  the  high  sense  of  the  importance 
of  the  popular  welfare,  which  breathe  throughout  its  animated  pages. 
If  this  is  a  specimen  of  Buchanan's  conversation  on  this  high  theme, 
it  must  indeed  have  been  a  rare  privilege  to  be  counted  among  his 
intimate  friends.  That  James  VI.  did  not  relish  it  is  not  sur- 
prising, but  this  lack  of  appreciation  is  to  be  attributed  to  the 
Stuart  tendency  to  resent  constitutional  control  and  even  well- 
meant  advice,  rather  than  to  anything  justly  offensive  to  limited 
monarchy  in  the  book  itself. 

J.  M. 


JAMES   I. 

(From  the  i:iii/niriii(/  in.  Vohimi-  I.  of  the  17:.'.'  edition  of  /Tuchanan'i 
'  History. ' ) 


XII. 

Buchanan  as  a  Historian/ 

If  we  expect  to  find  in  the  pages  of  George  Buchanan's  History 
the  treatment  of  history  after  the  manner  of  a  Gibbon  or  a 
Lecky,  we  shall  most  certainly  be  doomed  to  meet  with  dis- 
appointment. We  must  bear  in  mind  that  in  his  day  history 
had  not  been  converted  into  a  science,  and  in  all  justice  we 
must  make  liberal  allowances  accordingly ;  but  in  no  disparaging 
spirit,  be  it  said,  for  we  are  ever  conscious  that  we  are  regarding 
the  work  of  a  great  scholar. 

Buchanan  is  more  of  the  chronicler  than  the  historian  in  the 
present  day  acceptation.  The  value  of  his  litrum  Scoticarum 
Historia  depends  on  its  accuracy  as  a  chronicle,  and  that  is  the 
point  of  view  from  which  we  must  regard  it.  In  such  a  case 
we  have  to  take  the  character  of  the  author  into  our  considera- 
tion ;  granted  an  unwarrantable  proceeding  if  applied  to 
modern  historical  work,  where  the  personal  equation  should  not 
intrude.  Here  we  have  the  most  learned  Scotsman  of  his  day, 
a  man  with  a  recognised  European  fame,  the  friend  of  most  of 
the  outstanding  men  of  the  period  at  home  and  abroad,  occupy- 
ing an  exalted  position  in  his  own  land  as  the  outcome  of  his 
own  worth.  Is  it  not  but  just,  under  these  circumstances,  to 
assume  that  he  would  in  his  History  give  the  best  of  his 
knowledge,  and  keep  veracity  full  in  his  view,  especially  when 
dealing  with  the  period  which  fell  within  his  own  ken  ? 
Buchanan  must  have  been  conscious  that  the  eyes  of  Europe 
would  be  directed  to  his  work ;  in  fact  we  can  be  sure  of  it 
when  he  elected  to  write  in  Latin  and  not  in  the  vernacular. 
It  has  been  said  that  Buchanan  modelled  his  History  upon  that 
of  Livy  and  Sallust ;  only  to  a  limited  extent  is  the  statement 
true,  for  Buchanan  had  distinctly  his  own  style.     Even  Bishop 

^  Where  extracts  have  been   given  from  the  History,  the  Translation 
by  Aikman  has  been  used. 


106  Buchanan  as  a  Historian 

Burnet  made  the  statement  "  that  his  style  is  so  natural  and 
nervous,  and  his  reflections  on  things  so  solid,  that  he  is  justly 
reckoned  the  greatest  and  best  of  our  modern  authors." 

The  Epistle  Dedicatory  to  King  James  the  Sixth  says :  "I 
have  considered  it  my  next  duty  to  apply  to  that  species  of 
writing,  calculated  to  improve  the  mind,  that  I  might,  as  much 
as  possible,  supply  my  own  deficiency,  by  sending  to  you 
faithful  monitors  from  history,  whose  counsel  may  be  useful  in 
your  deliberations,  and  their  virtues  patterns  for  imitation  in 
active  life."  It  is  interesting  to  observe  the  value  Buchanan 
placed  upon  history  when  he  suggested  that  it  was  no  uncertain 
guide  to  those  at  the  head  of  a  state.  This  is  in  rather  sharp 
contrast  with  the  recent  attack  on  history  by  a  distinguished 
scientist  who  spoke  with  something  akin  to  contempt  of  those 
who  '  still  believing  that  the  teaching  and  sayings  of  antiquity, 
and  the  contemplation,  not  to  say  the  detailed  enumeration,  of 
the  blunders  and  crimes  of  its  ancestors,  can  furnish  mankind 
with  the  knowledge  necessary  for  its  future  progress.'  The 
opinion  of  one  who  was  a  historian  and  also  played  his  part  in 
the  affairs  of  state  commands  greater  respect. 

The  first  book  of  Buchanan's  History  consists  of  a  general 
description  of  Scotland.  This  book  has  no  doubt  a  marked 
value  through  its  being  the  personal  observation  of  one  who 
has  had  his  eyes  opened  by  the  view  of  other  lands  and  is  made 
conscious  of  the  particular  features  of  his  own.  In  the 
description  of  the  Western  Isles,  he  states,  he  was  assisted  by 
Donald  Munroe,  "  a  pious  and  diligent  man."  Some  of  the 
passages  in  this  book  have  a  notable  charm, — for  instance,  in  the 
reference  to  the  Shetlanders'  manner  of  living: — "They  are 
unacquainted  with  inebriety,  but  they  invite  each  other,  once 
a  month,  to  their  houses,  and  spend  these  days  cheerfully,  and 
moderately,  without  those  quarrels,  and  other  mischiefs,  which 
usually  spring  from  drunkenness ;  and  they  are  persuaded,  that 
this  custom  tends  to  cherish  and  perpetuate  mutual  friendship. 
An  instance  of  their  firm  vigorous  health  was  exhibited  in  our 
own  day,  in  the  person  of  a  man  named  Lawrence,  who  married 
a  wife  in  his  hundredth  year,  and  who,  at  the  age  of  one 
hundred  and  forty,  braving  the  roughest  sea,  was  accustomed 
to  go  to  the  fishing  in  his  own  skiff.  He  died  but  lately,  not 
cut  off  by  the  stroke  of  any  painful  disease,  but  dismissed 
gently  by  the  gradual  decay  of  old  age." 


Buchanan  as  a  Historian  107 

The  second  book  deals  with  the  problem  of  the  origin  of  the 
Scottish  race.  Perhaps  Buchanan  would  never  have  written 
this  book  in  such  detail  if  it  had  not  been  for  his  burning 
desire  ' '  to  slay  with  ink "  the  Welsh  antiquary,  Humphrey 
Lloyd.  The  fight  in  our  eyes  now-a-days  is  most  amusing ;  in 
it  Buchanan  proved,  whatever  else  he  lacked,  that  he  was 
the  master  of  invective.  Subsequent  history  furnishes  the 
underlying  purpose.  Buchanan  and  Hector  Boece  and  others 
sought  to  prove  the  antiquity  of  their  nation,  as  they  desired 
the  reverence  due  to  Age ;  they  resented  the  claim  of 
their  English  neighbours  to  an  origin  as  early.  Buchanan  in 
the  third  book,  by  an  appeal  to  classic  authors,  puts  his  enemies 
to  ilight. 

The  fourth  book  starts  the  History  proper.  Here  Buchanan 
follows  in  the  wake  of  Boece,  but  shews  more  discretion  in 
dealing  with  the  long  line  of  legendary  kings  of  Scotland. 
Much  severe  criticism  has  been  expended  on  this  list  of  kings, 
but  perhaps  all  that  can  be  pronounced  in  way  of  a  safe 
verdict  is  "  Not  Proven."  We  have  to  remember  that 
Buchanan  had  doubtless  access  to  manuscripts,  of  the  existence 
of  which  we  know  nothing  to-day ;  this  also  applies  to  other 
parts  of  his  work.  How  we  would  view  the  material  used 
by  Buchanan  in  the  present  day  is  another  matter,  as  it  would 
be  rash  to  assert  that  he  only  borrowed  from  Fordun  and  Boece. 
If,  for  instance,  the  MSS.  of  Adamnan  concerning  Saint 
Columba  had  been  lost,  how  gloriously  sceptical  some  historians 
would  have  been  with  regard  to  any  tale  about  him,  and  in  the 
account  of  these  kings  how  much  is  false,  how  much  true,  may 
never  be  known. 

We  shall  pass  over  the  succeeding  pages  till  we  arrive  at  the 
period  of  Wallace  and  Bruce.  These  great  heroes  lose  nothing 
of  their  greatness  at  this  historian's  hand.  Their  story  is  told 
with  vivid  force.  The  hero-worship  of  Wallace  and  Bruce  in 
our  own  time  is  largely  due  to  the  influence  of  Buchanan,  who, 
by  his  able  pen,  securely  shrined  them  in  the  just  affection  of 
their  fellow-countrymen.  His  summing-up  of  the  character  of 
Wallace  and  of  Bruce  will  remain  classic  in  the  history  of  our 
country.  Of  Wallace  he  writes: — "About  the  same  time, 
Wallace,  betrayed  by  his  own  familiar  friend,  John  Monteith, 
who  had  been  corrupted  by  English  money,  was  taken  in  the 
county  of  Lanark,  where  he  then  lurked,  and  sent  to  London, 


108  Buchanan  as  a  Historian 

where,  by  the  infamous  command  of  Edward,  he  was  quartered, 
and  his  disjointed  members  hung  up  in  the  most  remarkable 
places  of  England  and  Scotland,  as  a  terror  to  others.  Such 
was  the  end  of  a  man,  by  far  the  most  pre-eminent  in  the  times 
in  which  he  lived,  who  for  greatness  of  soul  in  undertaking,  and 
wisdom  and  fortitude  in  conducting  perilous  enterprises,  may  be 
compared  with  the  most  illustrious  leaders  of  antiquity.  In  love 
of  his  country,  inferior  to  none  of  the  most  eminent  ancient 
patriots,  amid  the  general  slavery,  HE  stood  alone  unsubdued 
and  free,  and  neither  could  rewards  induce,  nor  terrors  force 
him  to  desert  the  public  cause,  which  he  had  once  undertaken, 
and  his  death  was  the  more  grievous,  because,  unconquered  by 
his  enemies,  he  fell,  betrayed  by  those  from  whom  it  was  least  to 
be  expected."  Of  Bruce  he  says: — "  Robert  Bruce,  to  express 
much  in  few  words,  was  undoubtedly,  in  every  point  of  view, 
a  great  man,  and  one  to  whom,  from  the  heroic  ages  even  to 
these  times,  we  shall  find  few  comparable  in  every  species  of 
virtue.  As  he  was  brave  in  war,  so  he  was  moderate  in  peace; 
and  although  unexpected  success,  and  a  constant  flow  of  victory, 
after  fortune  was  satiated,  or  rather  fatigued  with  his 
sufferings,  elevated  him  to  the  most  splendid  pinnacle  of  glory, 
yet,  he  appears  to  me  far  more  admirable  in  adversity.  What 
strength  of  mind  did  he  display,  when,  assailed  at  once  by  so 
many  misfortunes,  he  not  only  was  not  broken,  but  not  even 
bent !  Whose  constancy  would  it  not  have  shaken,  to  have  had 
a  wife  captive,  four  heroic  brothers  cruelly  murdered,  his 
friends  afflicted  with  every  species  of  distress,  they  who  escaped 
death  robbed  and  driven  away,  and  he  himself,  not  only  stripped 
of  an  ample  patrimony,  but  of  a  kingdom,  by  the  most  power- 
ful, active,  and  ablest  prince  of  the  age  ?  Yet,  beset  with  all 
these  calamities  at  once,  and  reduced  to  the  extremity  of  want, 
never  did  he  despair,  or  do  or  say  any  thing  unworthy  of  a 
king.  He  neither,  like  Cato  the  younger,  nor  Marcus  Brutus, 
offered  violence  to  himself,  nor  did  he,  like  Marius,  enraged  by 
his  misfortunes,  wreak  his  vengeance  on  his  enemies.  But 
having  recovered  his  pristine  station,  he  behaved  towards  those 
who  had  caused  him  so  much  travail,  as  if  he  only  remembered 
that  he  was  now  their  sovereign,  not  that  they  had  ever  been 
his  enemies ;  and  at  last,  at  the  close  of  life,  when  a  grievous 
distemper  was  added  to  the  troubles  of  old  age,  he  retained  so 
much  self-possession,  that  he  arranged  the  present  state  of  the 


Buchanan  as  a  Historian  109 

kingdom,  and  consulted  for  the  tranquillity  of  his  posterity ! 
With  justice  was  his  death  lamented  by  his  people,  not  only  as 
that  of  an  upright  king,  but  of  a  loving  father." 

Reference  has  been  made  to  the  speeches  Buchanan  places  to 
the  credit  of  some  personages  in  his  History;  of  this  a  very 
notable  instance  may  be  found  in  the  speech  of  Bishop  Kennedy 
to  the  nobles  against  the  expediency  of  appointing  the  queen- 
mother  as  the  Regent  during  the  minority  of  James  III.  The 
oration  consists  of  a  lengthy  reasoning  why  women  are  unfit  to 
govern  a  nation.  He  taunts  the  nobles  with  being  mere  flatterers 
who  desired  the  queen  as  Regent,  and  with  concealing 
their  real  sentiments.  "  To  assist  in  the  public  deliberations  of 
parliament,  to  preside  in  the  courts  of  justice,  to  enact  or  to 
abrogate  laws,  these  duties,  although  each  important  in  itself, 
yet  form  only  a  small  portion  of  a  public  administration.  Why, 
therefore,  do  they  not  bring  their  wives  to  consult  with  us  ?  to 
sit  in  judgment  ?  to  draw  up,  or  oppose  our  statutes  ?  Why 
do  they  not  stay  at  home  themselves  to  manage  their 
domestic  affairs,  and  send  their  ladies  to  the  camp  ?  " 
Kennedy  ( ?)  then  proceeds  to  make  it  quite  clear  that  he 
speaks  not  of  the  queen  in  particular,  but  of  her  sex  in  general 
to  whom  he  pays  a  gallant  tribute.  "  When  I  say  a  woman, 
lest  any  should  imagine  I  speak  contumeliously,  I  mean  one  on 
whom  nature  has  bestowed  many  enchanting  qualities,  and 
most  delightful  accomplishments,  allayed,  it  is  true,  as  all  her 
loveliest  and  most  precious  gifts  are,  by  a  delicate  weakness, 
which,  rendering  her  less  able  to  protect  herself,  doubles  her 
claims  upon  the  protection  of  another,  and,  therefore,  our  laws, 
in  obedience  to  the  dictates  of  nature,  instead  of  burdening  the 
female  with  the  fatigue  of  government,  has  intrusted  her, 
during  life,  to  the  successive  care  of  fathers,  brothers,  and 
husbands.  Nor  is  this  intended  as  a  reproach,  but  as  a  relief; 
for  to  be  prevented  from  undertaking  tasks  for  which  they  are 
unfit,  is  a  tribute  paid  to  their  modesty,  not  an  affront 
detracting  from  their  honour."  The  learned  Bishop  then 
proceeded  to  make  an  appeal  to  history,  in  support  of  his 
various  arguments.  "  If  any  of  you  imagine  that  I  suppose  a 
fictitious  case,  let  him  recollect  what  disturbance  the  reign  of 
Joan  lately  occasioned  at  Naples.  Look  into  ancient  history — 
I  shall  not  mention  Semiramis  of  Assyria,  nor  Laodice  of 
Cappadocia,    these    were    monsters,    and    not    women — see    the 


no  Buchanan  as  a  Historian 

celebrated  Zenobia  of  Palmyra,  victorious  over  the  Parthians, 
the  rival  of  imperial  Rome,  at  last  vanquished,  and  carried  in 
triumph,  and  the  kingdom  which  had  been  increased  and 
adorned  by  her  husband  Odenatus,  overturned  in  a  moment !  " 
The  deliverance  seems  to  have  borne  fruit  in  the  amicable 
settlement  of  the  question.  Was  this  speech  made  for 
Kennedy  by  Buchanan,  and  if  so  was  it  justifiable  to  do  so  ? 
As  we  look  on  things  to-day,  the  answer  must  be  an  emphatic 
'  no.'  There  is  justice,  however,  looking  at  the  matter  from 
Buchanan's  point  of  view.  In  the  days  of  Kennedy  there  were 
no  press  reporters,  and  Buchanan  could  argue  the  matter  that 
the  facts  were  these :  that  the  queen  wanted  to  become  Regent 
in  this  and  was  supported  by  some  of  the  nobles,  the  Archbishop 
of  St.  Andrews  made  a  speech  against  such  an  arrangement,  his 
line  of  argument  must  have  been  that  the  queen  was  unfit  by 
reason  of  her  sex  for  the  post.  Then  the  speech  was  easy, — for 
Buchanan.  The  strongest  objection  lies  in  the  fact  that  the 
address  reflects  too  markedly  the  personal  opinions  of  the 
recorder.  Buchanan  shared  the  views  of  Knox  regarding  the 
"  Monstrous  Begiment  of  Women  "  and  their  incapacity  to  rule. 
Perhaps,  four  hundred  years  after  the  birth  of  Buchanan, 
statesmen  may  be  found  inclined  to  pray  that  another  Kennedy 
of  persuasive  eloquence  might  arise. 

When  Buchanan's  History  reaches  the  period  from  the  reign 
of  James  IV.,  it  holds  for  the  reader  a  new  interest,  as  it  is, 
more  or  less,  a  contemporary  account  of  events  with  which  the 
writer  was  familiar ;  it  is  the  story  of  one  of  the  most 
momentous  epochs  in  Scottish  history. 

Buchanan  has  given  us  a  most  interesting  account  of  the 
fatal  Field  of  Flodden,  which  cost  Scotland  a  king  and  the  best 
of  her  nobility ;  he  was  seven  years  old  at  the  time,  and  would 
most  likely  remember  listening  to  the  news  of  the  disaster. 
Often  has  the  story  of  that  day  of  woe  been  retold,  in  legend 
and  in  song,  but  never  with  much  more  pride  and  sorrow,  than 
Buchanan  evinced  when  he  said :  ' '  Such  was  the  celebrated 
battle  of  Flodden,  remarkable  among  the  few  overthrows  of  the 
Scots,  not  so  much  for  the  number  of  the  slain — for  often  double 
the  number  perished  in  their  battles — as  for  the  destruction  of 
the  king  and  the  principal  nobility,  which  left  few  remaining 
capal)lo  of  governing  the  multitude  ....  James,  as  he 
was  greatly  beloved  while  alive,  so  when  dead  his  memory  was 


Buchanan  as  a  Historian  111 

cherished  with  an  affection  beyond  what  I  have  ever  read,  or 
heard  of  being  entertained  for  any  other  king." 

The  charge  has  often  been  laid  to  Buchanan  of  being  far  too 
partisan  in  his  estimates  of  his  contemporaries ;  Cardinal 
Beaton  is  a  favourite  showpiece  to  prove  the  contention. 
Buchanan  was  but  human,  and  nothing  else  should  be 
claimed  for  him.  Let  a  historian  be  driven  from  pillar  to 
post  by  a  Jesuit  '  gang '  and  get  a  turn  of  the  joys  of  the 
Inquisition ;  if  he  could  write  of  the  man  that  was  responsible 
for  his  troubles,  as  though  they  had  not  been,  then  we  could 
safely  say  of  him  '  he  is  a  god  and  not  a  man.'  Recent  facts 
which  have  come  to  light  all  tend  to  show  that  Buchanan  was 
not  so  frequently  in  error  as  his  critics  have  often  sought  to 
prove. 

The  chief  point  of  interest  in  this  history  has  always 
centred  round  the  account  of  the  unhappy  Mary  Queen  of 
Scots.  It  is  not  to  be  looked  for  that  this  battle-ground  will 
soon  be  deserted,  we  might  say  never  as  long  as  Reformed  and 
Unreformed  faiths  remain.  You  cannot  look  for  an  apprecia- 
tion of  Buchanan's  History  from  those  who  would  fain  hail  her 
as  "St.  Mary  of  Scotland,  the  Martyr,"  or  yet,  from  those  who 
seem  to  regard  the  Reformation  as  a  "  sort  of  mistake,"  or 
again,  from  sentimentalists  whose  enthusiasm  for  the  "  fair 
queen  "  is  usually  in  inverse  ratio  to  their  knowledge.  Some 
enlightened  beings  tell  us  that  Buchanan  by  his  History  and 
Detectio  proved  how  basely  ingrate  he  was  to  his  queen.  Why  ? 
The  question  usually  causes  some  confusion.  Of  a  truth,  he 
read  Latin  with  her  and  did  some  translating  for  the  court ; 
it  is  reasonable  to  expect  he  would  get  payment.  He  got  that 
payment  from  the  Abbey  of  Crossraguel  to  the  amount  of 
four  to  five  hundred  pounds  Scots  (£41  13s  4d  stg.) ;  that 
was  due  to  him  at  least,  but  not  always  did  he  get  it  paid 
to  him.  There  is  thus  no  evidence  that  Buchanan  was  under 
any  obligation  to  Mary. 

Whatever  faults  Buchanan  had,  he  was  no  time-server,  and 
what  he  wrote  in  his  history,  or  in  "  ANE  DETECTIOUN  of 
the  DOINGIS  of  MARIE  QUENE  of  Scottis,  twiching  The 
Murther  of  hir  Husband ;  And  hir  Conspiracie,  Adulterie,  and 
pretensit  Mariage  with  the  Erie  Bothwell,"  he  wrote  what  he 
felt  convinced  was  true.  We  cannot  suspect  Archbishop 
Spottiswood  of  being  unduly  favourable  to  Buchanan,  yet,  his 


112  Buchanan  as  a  Historian 

estimate  is  singularly  just  when  he  says: — "  His  bitterness  also 
in  writing  of  the  queen  and  troubles  of  that  time  all  wise  men 
have  disliked.  But,  otherwise  no  man  did  better  merit  of  his 
nation  for  learning,  nor  thereby  did  bring  it  to  more  glory." 
The  Archbishop  is  right ;  it  may  be  a  question  of  manners,  it  is 
not  one  of  truth.  The  Betectio  has  been  incorporated  with  the 
History,  and  therefore  falls  within  the  scope  of  our  subject. 
A  recent  writer  in  7i!ackv'on//'s  Magazine  states :  "A  scholar 
and  a  humanist  should  not  stoop  to  collect  the  tittle-tattle  of 
the  kitchen.  He  should  not  listen  with  an  avid  ear  to  the 
voice  of  malice.  It  is  consonant  neither  with  learning  nor 
chivalry  to  insult  a  woman  and  a  queen.  The  guilt  or 
innocence  of  Mary  does  not  palliate  or  enhance  the  crime  of 
Buchanan."  We  take  notice  of  this,  as  such  statements  regard- 
ing Buchanan  are  frequently  made,  and  the  example  given 
furnishes  the  point  of  their  usual  trend  and  weakness  also. 
We  have  to  measure  the  work  in  the  light  of,  not  the  twentieth 
century,  but  of  the  sixteenth  century ;  most  important  of  all 
we  must  keep  in  mind  the  purpose  of  the  book.  The  Detectio 
was  an  official  publication,  and  the  relation  of  Buchanan  to  it 
is  that  of  a  counsel  for  the  prosecution ;  therefore  with  equal 
relevancy  we  may  bring  home  the  charge  of  '  malice,'  lack  of 
'  chivalry,'  etc.,  to  any  counsel  who  strives  to  bring  proof  of 
guilt  against  any  woman,  calling  at  the  same  time  his  carefully 
reasoned  indictment  the  '  tittle-tattle  of  the  kitchen,'  as  though 
he  were  responsible  for  the  want  of  moral  cleanness  in  the 
charge.  If  Buchanan  were  unjust  and  biased  against  Mary, 
why  did  he  write  the  long,  clear  account  of  her  dispatch  to 
Prance  after  her  marriage  to  Bothwell,  which  forms  the  best 
vindication  of  her  in  existence  ? 

With  the  death  of  the  Regent  Lennox,  Buchanan's  History 
draws  to  a  close.  We  could  well  wish  that  it  had  continued 
into  the  time  of  Morton,  as  our  historian  would  doubtless  have 
had  something  of  note  to  say  regarding  that  statesman. 

We  have  endeavoured  to  give  an  account  of  the  principal 
foatiires  of  Buchanan's  work,  and  shall  now  strive  to  find  its 
place  in  the  historical  world.  The  Hisfori/  had  not  long  seen 
the  light,  when  James  the  Sixth,  of  blessed  memory,  found  it 
necessary  to  publish  an  Act  of  Parliament  regarding  it,  which 
was  as  follows : — ".  .  .  .  Attoure,  because  it  is  understand 
and  to  his  Hienos,  and  to  his  three  Estaites  that  the  buikes  of 


Buchanan  as  a  Historian  113 

the  Chronicle,  and  De  jure  regni  apud  Scotos,  made  umquhile, 
Maister  GEORGE  BUCHANANE,  and  imprented  sensine, 
conteinis  sindrie  offensive  matters,  worthie  to  be  deleete :  IT  IS 
THEIRFORE  statute  and  ordained,  that  the  havers  of  the 
saidis  twa  volumes  in  their  handes,  inbring,  and  deliver  the 
same  to  my  Lord  Secretare,  or  his  deputes,  within  fourtie  dayes, 
after  the  publication  hereof,  to  the  effect,  that  the  saidis 
volumes  may  bee  perused,  and  purged  of  the  offensive,  and 
extraordinarie  matters  specified  theirin,  not  meete  to  remaine 
as  Recordes  of  trueth  to  the  posteritie,  under  the  paine  of  twa 
hundreth  pundes,  of  everie  person  failzieing  heirin.  And 
quhair  ony  ar  not  responsal  to  pay  the  said  summe,  to  be 
punished  in  their  persones,  at  OUR  SOVERAINE  LORDIS 
will.  And  to  the  effect,  that  this  ordinance  may  cum  to  the 
knawledge  of  all  OUR  SOVERAINE  LORDIS  Lieges, 
ordainis  publication  to  be  maid  heirof,  at  the  mercat  croce  of 
the  head  Burrowes  of  the  Schires,  and  utheris  places  needeful. 
That  nane  pretend  ignorance  theirof ;  And  the  penaltie 
conteined  theirin,  to  be  executed  with  all  rigour  against  the 
havers  of  the  saidis  buikes,  the  said  space  of  fourty  dayes  being 
by-past,  after  the  publication,  and  proclamation  of  the  said 
Act  in  every  Schire,  as  said  is."  Government  again  took 
notice  of  Buchanan's  Writings  in  the  year  1638,  when  in  front 
of  Oxford  University  they  were  burnt  by  the  common  hangman ; 
this  must  be  regarded  as  an  honour  and  a  testimony  to  the 
truth  they  contain ;  kings  and  states  do  not  give  orders  to  have 
books  destroyed  unless  they  have  reason  to  fear  the  TRUTH. 
Scotland  may  feel  justly  proud  of  two  of  her  sons,  George 
Buchanan  and  Samuel  Rutherford,  who  by  their  teaching 
influenced  the  nation,  and  which  ultimately  led  to  the  formation 
of  our  present  model  British  Constitution. 

The  testimony  of  nearly  all  Buchanan's  contemporaries  is  one 
of  enthusiasm  for  his  History,  though  an  adverse  criticism  was 
expressed  by  Sir  James  Melville  in  the  words  that  '  in  his 
(Buchanan's)  auld  dayes  he  was  become  sleperie  and  cairless.' 
The  value  of  this  judgment  is  answered  by  the  History  itself, 
which  does  not  show  the  alleged  faults.  In  the  generations 
following,  the  principles  embodied  in  the  History  had  the  warm 
approval  of  such  men  as  Milton  and  Dry  den.  It  was  but 
natural  that  the  succeeding  years,  in  harmony  with  the  spirit 
of  the  age,  should  adopt  a  more  critical  standpoint  with 
I 


114  Buchanan  as  a  Historian 

rtjgard  to  the  Ui story.  We  find  it  therefore  under  a  somewhat 
severe  review  at  the  hands  of  such  men  as  Lord  Hailes  and 
Piukorton.  The  nineteenth  century  being  jjar  excellence  the  era 
of  critical  research,  the  discriminating  erudition  of  Tytler  and 
Burton  was  brought  to  bear  on  the  subject  without  very  much 
astray  being  discerned.  Burton,  in  his  Ilintory  of  Scotland, 
sums  up  his  opinion  thus; — "It  has  become  the  practice  with 
some  writers  to  disbelieve  everything  said  by  Buchanan.  Great 
part  of  his  History  is  doubtless  fabulous,  and  when  he  comes 
to  the  controversies  in  which  he  took  part,  he  was  too  strong 
a  partisan  to  be  impartial."  We  can  well  believe  that  the 
shade  of  Buchanan,  if  speech  were  possible,  would,  not  without 
justice,  apply  to  his  critics  the  phrase  he  used  to  Lloyd : 

Loripedem  rectus  derideat,  ^thiopem  albus. 
If   historians   in   their   judgments   of   other   historians   are  not 
generous,  who  should  be  ? 

We  have  now  to  try  and  form  an  estimate  of  the  value  of 
Buchanan's  Historu  at  the  present  year  of  grace.  We  have  said 
that  last  century  was  the  period  of  criticism,  and  to  that  we 
might  add,  of  the  desire  for  scientific  exactness  in  all  the  various 
forms  of  human  thought  and  activity, — the  application  to  Holy 
Writ  or  to  the  life  of  a  microbe.  If  we  judge  thus  early  of 
what  the  temper  of  this  century  shall  be,  we  might  call  it  one 
of  precision,  though  we  may  be  conscious  that  life  may  become 
a  soulless  thing  if  we  become  too  analytical  in  our  modes  of 
thought.  Pygmalion  may  carve  the  form  so  nearly  divine,  but 
it  requires  the  god  to  give  it  life.  We  may  be  able  to  construct 
a  history,  a  very  exact  history,  from  State  Papers,  but  when  it 
is  done,  surely  it  will  lack  something — colour  or  life,  shall 
we  call  it?  We  cannot  do  without  Buchanan's  History,  or  any 
other  record  which  faithfully  delineates  the  period  which  has 
fallen  under  the  recorder's  personal  knowledge ;  its  worth  lies 
in  the  individual  note  which  is  struck  and  which  nothing 
impersonal  can  supply.  In  our  age  and  in  succeeding  time, 
Buchanan's  History  must  find  an  honoured  place,  in  so  far  as  it 
is  the  account  of  a  great  period  of  history  seen  through  a  great 
man's  eyes.  He,  doubtless,  would  be  bold  who  asserted  that  the 
llhtory  was  without  fault,  for  there  arc  errors  of  chronology,  a 
want  of  due  sense  of  proportion  between  detail  and  the  main 
theme,  but,  surely,  we  can  overlook  all  that  by  reason  of  its 
greatness  otherwise. 

J.  A.  B 


XIII. 

Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan. 

Buchanan  dit  lui-meme,  dans  une  de  ses  Lettres,^  qu'il  avait 
traduit  la  Medee  d'Euripide,  non  pour  la  publier,  mais  pour 
se  perfectionner  dans  I'etude  du  grec,  et  qu'il  dut,  pour  ceder 
aux  importunes  sollicitations  de  ses  amis,  la  faire  paraitre,  alors 
qu'il  enseignait  les  lettres  latines  a  Bordeaux  et  qu'il  etait 
force  de  fournir  chaque  annee  une  piece  qui  devait  etre 
representee  par  les  eleves.  II  ajoute  que,  bon  nombre  de 
negligences  lui  etant  echappees,  il  remania  sa  tragedie  quelques 
annees  plus  tard,  guerissant  certaines  blessures,  mais  de  telle 
sorte  que  les  cicatrices  paraissent  encore  9a  et  la  (qucEtlani  in 
ea  vulnera  ita  sanavi  ut  adhuc  cicatrices  alicuhi  wp-pareant). 
La  Medee,  corrigee,  parut  avec  YAlceste  chez  Henri  Estienne, 
en  1567. 

UAlceste  avait  deja  ete  publiee  seule,  en  1557,  chez  Michel 
Vascosan,  precedee  d'une  preface  tres  laudative  a  I'illustris- 
sime  princesse  Marguerite,  scEur  d'Henri  II.,  roi  de  France. 
L'auteur  ne  dit  rien  de  I'annee  ou  YAlceste  fut  representee  au 
College  de  Guyenne. 

II  n'est  pas  utile  d'insister  sur  les  deux  tragedies  empruntees 
par  Buchanan  a  Euripide :  ce  sont  "  d'elegantes  traductions," 
dit  Patin,  bon  juge  en  la  matiere.^ 

Les  pieces  originales  meritent  qu'on  s'y  arrete  plus  longue- 
ment.  La  premiere  oeuvre  de  Buchanan,  composee  a  Bordeaux 
et  jouee  au  College  de  Guyenne,  ne  fut  publiee  qu'eu  1578. 
Thomas  Ruddiman,  qui  a  procure  I'edition  complete  des  oeuvres 
de  Buchanan  donnee  a  Leyde  en  1725,  ne  connait  que  le 
Baptistes   imprime   a   Edinburgh    en   1578.^      La   Bibliotheque 

'  Epistola  xxvii.   Georgius  Buchananus  Danieli  Rogersio,   Edinbiirgi,   9 
Nov.  1579  {Buchanani  Opera  omnia,  6dit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  755). 

2  Patin,  Etudes  sur  les  tragiques  grecs,  Paris,  (Sdit.  de  1866,  vol.  III.,  p.  221. 

3  Buchanani  Opera  omnia,  ddit.  de  1725,  t.  I.,  note  36  de  la  Vita. 


116  Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan 

municipale  de  Bordeaux  posaede  un  exemplaire  d'une  edition 
publiee  a  Londres  la  meme  annee.^  Dans  une  dedicace  de 
quelques  lignes,  ecrite  a  Stirling  le  l"  novembre  1576,  et 
adressee  au  jeune  Jacques  VI.,  age  de  dix  ans,  dont  il  etait 
alors  le  precepteur,  Buchanan  expliquait  a  son  illustre  eleve  que 
le  Baptistes  etait  la  premiere  piece  qu'il  eut  composee,  jadis, 
pour  d'autres  eleves,  des  jeunes  gens  qu'il  s'agissait  de  ramener 
a  I'imitation  de  I'antiquite  en  ranimant  chez  eux  les  sentiments 
d'une  piete  tres  attaquee  en  ce  temps-la.  II  ajoutait  que  de 
cette  tragedie  se  degage  un  enseignement  precieux  pour  un  roi 
qui  ne  doit  pas  s'abandonner  a  de  mauvais  conseillers. 

En  1586,  Brisset,  sieur  de  Sauvage,  faisait  preuve  de  saine 
critique  litteraire  en  reunissant  dans  un  meme  volume  de 
traductions,  publie  a  Tours,  YHercule  furieux,  V Agafnemnon  et 
le  Thyeste  de  Seneque,  VOctavie,  oeuvre  d'un  imitateur  inconnu 
du  poete  philosophe,  et  le  Baptiste  de  Buchanan.  Cette 
tragedie  precede,  en  effet,  aussi  bien  que  I'Octavie,  de  la 
maniere  theatrale  de  Seneque. 

Le  spectateur  voit,  tout  d'abord,  s'avancer  sur  la  scene  un 
personnage  qui  developpe  les  theories  et  expose  les  plaintes  du 
poete.  C'est  le  Prologus,  cet  acteur  que  Terence  chargeait  de 
defendre  ses  pieces  ou  il  ne  lui  donnait  aucun  role.  Dans  ce 
discours  polemique,  redige  suivant  la  formule  des  prologues  de 
I'ecrivain  latin,  Buchanan  se  plaint  aigrement  des  critiques, 
plus  clairvoyants  que  Lyncee  a  decouvrir  les  defauts  de  la 
tragedie  d'un  auteur,  incapables  eux-memes  d'en  composer  une. 
Qu'on  remette  au  theatre  un  sujet  ancien,  que  Ton  imagine  une 
fable  nouvelle,  les  censeurs  blament  et  desapprouvent  toujours. 
Dedaigneux  de  ces  envieux  sans  loyaute,  le  poete  s'adresse  a 
r  ' '  sestimator  candidus  " ;  celui-ci  pourra  voir,  a  son  gre,  dans 
Baptistes  une  piece  moderne  ou  une  piece  antique ;  car,  si 
Taction  de  la  tragedie  se  passe  il  y  a  bien  des  siecles,  la 
calomnie  qui  en  fait  le  fond  se  renouvelle  chaque  jour.' 

1  BAPTISTES,  sive  Oalumnia,  Iraijocdia,  auctore  Georgia  BUCHANANO 
ScoTO,  LONDINI.  El  proslanl  AHluerjiiae,  apud  lacohum  Henricium, 
MDLXXVIII.  (64  pp.  in-I6), 

^  Baptistes  {Buchanani  Opera  omnia,  6dit.  do  17-5,  t.  II.,  pp.  215-252). 
V.  42 : 

Pori'o  vooare  tabulam  votorcm  aut  iiu\'iiin 
Por  me  licobit  oiiiquo  pro  arbitrio  auo  .   .   . 
V.  48  : 

Nail),  doneo  homiiium  yonus  oiit,  sonipor  nova) 
Fraudos,  novaiquB  auppetent  caliimnitB, 


Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan  117 

Puis,  entrent  en  scene  les  deux  pharisiens  Gamaliel  et 
Malchus,  suivis  du  Choeur  compose  de  Juifs.  Malchus  deplore 
les  malheurs  du  peuple  d'Israel,  accable  par  la  tyrannic  de 
Rome,  desole  par  une  impiete  nouvelle  qui  fera  perir,  qui  fait 
perir,  qui  a  deja  fait  perir  toute  la  saintete  de  la  foi  antique.' 
L'auteur  de  ce  desastre  n'est  autre  que  Jean-Baptiste,  ce  faux 
prophete  qui  vit  dans  le  desert,  revetu  d'un  costume  etrange, 
qui  a  imagine  le  rite  nouveau  du  bapteme,  qui  incite  au 
mepris  de  I'ancienne  religion ;  il  faut  se  defaire  de  cet  homme 
dangereux. 

Gamaliel  repond  a  cette  violente  diatribe  avec  une  man- 
suetude  digne  de  Micion,  le  vieillard  bienveillant  des  Adelyhes 
de  Terence ;  il  preche  le  calme  et  la  moderation :  ne  peut-on 
pas  accorder  quelque  indulgence  a  la  temerite  des  jeunes 
gens?^  Malchus  ne  veut  rien  entendre;  les  objections  cour- 
toises  de  Gamaliel  ne  font  qu'exasperer  I'intransigeance  de 
son  orthodoxie  etroite.  Comme  Tomas  de  Torquemada,  il 
estime  que  la  corde,  le  fer  et  le  feu  doivent  avoir  raison  de 
I'impiete ;  il  regrette  de  ne  pouvoir  disposer  de  moyens  de 
torture  plus  cruels  f  et,  puisqu'il  ne  trouve  aucun  appui 
aupres  des  rabbins  et  des  pharisiens,  il  aura  recours  au  bras 
seculier :    il  va  demander  I'aide  du  roi  Herode.* 

Fort  de  I'approbation  du  ChcEur,^  Gamaliel  developpe  dans 
un  long  monologue  des  considerations  dignes  d'un  disciple  de 
Luther :  il  invoque  le  droit  de  chaque  fidele  au  libre  examen' 
et   fait   responsable   des   progres   de   I'impiete   les   pharisiens — 

'  Bapiistes,  v.  107  : 

.  .  .  ilia  Celebris  orbi  sanctitas 

Brevi  peribit,  imo  perit,  imo  periit. 
2  Baptistes,  v.  Ill ; 

Juvenum  temeritati  dari  venia  potest. 

'  Baptistes,  v.  190  : 

Curanda  non  est  ista  plaga  moUiter, 
Sed  fune,  ferro  et  igne  ;  vel  si  quid  scias 
Quod  fune,  ferro  et  igne  sit  orudelius. 

^  Baptistes,  v.  215  : 

Et  quando  apud  vos  nil  reperio  prsesidi, 
Contra  ruinam  regiura  auxilium  petara. 

'  Baptistes,  v.  217  : 

Reote  Gamaliel  admonet,  me  judioe. 
'  Baptistes,  v.  272  : 

Interpretetur  quisque  pro  ingenio,  ut  lubet. 


118  Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan 

ces  Franciscains  du  temps  de  Jean-Bapfciste — qui  trompent 
le  peuple  par  I'apparence  de  la  saintete.' 

Le  Choeur  deplore  les  malheurs  auxquels  sonfc  exposes  les 
innocents,  qui  ne  peuvent  jamais  etre  a  I'abri  des  mechants. 

Voici  maintenant  la  reine  qui  reproche  au  roi  de  ne  pas 
faire  acte  de  vigueur  contra  Jean-Baptiste — concitator  iste  vulgi 
— et  Herode  qui  repond  par  de  nobles  et  vagues  maximes  sur 
la  miserable  condition  des  rois  reduits  a  craindre  les 
miserables.^  Peu  satisfaite  de  ces  sententiae,  dignes  d'un  eleve 
qui  aurait  mieux  profite  que  Neron  de  I'enseignement  du 
philosophe  Seneque,  la  reine  s'en  va  furieuse,  en  s'ecriant 
qu'Herode  n'a  pas  Tame  d'un  roi. 

Celui-ci  s'empresse  de  constater,  comme  un  mari  de  comedie 
que  sa  femme  est  reellement  partie  f  il  profite  de  ce  depart 
opportun  pour  s'entretenir  avec  Jean-Baptiste  qu'il  a  fait 
mander :  dans  un  discours  tres  amical,  il  prie  le  prophete 
d'excuser  les  violences  de  langage  d'une  femme,  d'une  reine 
outragee  ;■*  il  lui  rapelle  I'appui  qu'il  lui  a  toujours  prete  et 
lui  montre  avec  douceur  tout  ce  qu'il  y  a  de  reprehensible 
dans  ses  propres  predications  :  promesse  d'un  royaume  nouveau 
qui  excite  les  soldats  a  desobeir  a  leurs  chefs,  le  peuple  a 
desobeir  a  Cesar ;  attaques  publiques  contre  le  mariage  du  roi 
lui-meme.  Tout  sera  oublie,  si  Jean-Baptiste  met  un  terme  a 
ses  funestes  declamations ;  il  obtiendra  du  roi  tout  ce  qu'on 
peut  esperer  d'un  juge  ami  et  bienveillant.' 

Le  Choeur  approuve :  en  perseverant  dans  ces  sentiments, 
Herode  continuera  a  etre  cheri  de  son  peuple ;  sa  moderation 
le  rendra  illustre  a  jamais. 

Mais  le  prophete  est  intraitable :  il  poursuivra  son  oeuvre ; 
il  a  pour  devoir  de  denoncer  au  grand  jour  les  crimes  publics  et 
prives.     Qu'Herode  rentre  en  lui-meme:     vaut-il  mieux  plaire 

1  Baptistes,  v.  228  : 

Nostrique  ocetus  vitium  id  eat  vel  maximum 
Qui  sanotitatis  ploboni  imagine  fallimus. 

^  Baptistes,  v.  367  :  Conditio  regum  miaora,  ai  miseros  timet. 

"  Baptistes,  v.  404  :  Jamno  abiit  ?    Abiit. 

'  Baptistes,  v.  408 :  .  .  .  laisa  mulior,  nobilis,  dives,  potena, 
Rogina  doniqno  .   .  . 

''  Iliiplistes,  V.  440 :  ...  quioquid  favor 

Judioia  amioi  ot  boiiovoli  potorit  ilaro, 
Tribuotur  a  nio  liboraliter  tibi. 


Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan  119 

au  roi  que  d'accomplir  la  volonte  de  Dieu?'  Herode  fait  sortir 
Jean-Baptiste ;  le  Choeur  est  plein  d'inquietude  f  et  le  roi 
deplore — comme  I'CEdipe  de  Sophocle — les  angoisses  inseparables 
de  la  fortune  royale :  ^  s'il  decide  la  perte  du  prophete,  il 
s'aliene  son  peuple ;  s'il  I'epargne,  il  ruine  son  autorite  et  il 
s'attire  Tinimitie  dangereuse  de  Malchus. 

Le  Choeur  adresse  une  fervente  invocation  a  I'Eternel :  que 
le  Dieu  d'Israel  n'abandonne  pas  son  peuple ! 

Malchus  a  decide  d'avoir  un  entretien  definitif  avec  Jean- 
Baptiste.  Alors  que  tous  hesitent,  il  saura,  seul,  venger  la 
dignite  outragee  des  pharisiens.  Dans  un  monologue  passionne, 
il  resume  la  situation :  le  peuple  adore  le  faux  prophete ;  les 
rabbins  murmurent ;  le  roi  incline  a  I'impiete ;  les  grands  sont 
indifferents.*  Reduit  a  ses  seules  forces,  il  va  essayer  de  gagner 
par  de  bonnes  paroles  cet  homme  dont  il  trompera  sans  peine 
la  simplicite — animi  simplex  homo — .  S'il  ne  reussit  pas,  il  le 
fera  perir  et  s'arrangera  de  maniere  a  ce  que  le  peuple  ne  le 
soup9onne  pas  de  la  mort  de  son  prophete. 

Mais,  le  voici  lui-meme,  escorte  d'une  foule  de  fideles,  alors 
que  les  rabbins  sont  abandonnes.  Malchus  se  met  a  I'ecart 
pour  ecouter  ce  que  dira  le  prophete ;  et  il  entend  une 
eloquente  predication,  qui  commence  par  une  action  de  graces 
adressee  a  I'Eternel,  dont  les  bienfaits  ne  cessent  de  se  repandre 
sur  ses  creatures,  et  qui  se  continue  par  une  attaque  violente 
centre  le  roi  ennemi  de  Dieu — Malchus  approuve  en  aparte'^ — , 
contre  le  peuple  infidele  qui  ose  se  dire  le  peuple  de  Dieu — 
Malchus  continue  a  approuver" — ,  puis  contre  les  hommes  plus 
coupables  que  le  peuple,  ces  levites  resplendissants  dans  leurs 
longues  robes  blanches,  ces  docteurs  de  la  loi  gonfles  de  leur 
science,  ces  vieillards  hypocrites  qui  depouillent  la  veuve  et 
I'orphelin — Malchus  furieux  se  contient  a  peine' — ,  enfin  contre 
les    rabbins,    ces   mauvais    bergers    du    troupeau    qui    leur    est 

^  Baptistes,  v.  492  :  ...  id  ipse  tecum  cogita, 

Utrum  plaoere  tibi  sit  iequius,  an  Deo  ? 

^  Baptistes,  v.  523  :  Sed  ominari  raetuit  animus  quie  timet. 

'  Bwptiites,  V.  524  :  Fortuaa  regum  quam  misera  sit  et  anxia, 
Nee  fando  poterit  explicare  oratio, 
Nee  cogitando  mentis  aoies  assequi. 

"  Bwptistes,  V.  660-662. 

^  Baptistes,  v.  718  :  Principia  recte  scso  habent  tibi  hactenus. 

^  Baptistes,  v.  725  :  Sane  locutus  cuneta  vero  es  hactenus. 

'  Baptistes,  v.  734  :  Disrumpor  ira  :  taoitus  hfec  ut  audiam  ? 


120  Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan 

confie :  ' '  Lee  loups  hurlent  autour  des  bergeries,  et  vous  ne 
les  ecartez  pas.  Les  loups,  ai-je  dit?  Mais  c'est  vous  qui  etes 
les  loups;  c'est  vous  qui  devorez  le  troupeau.  Sa  laine  vous 
habille,  son  lait  vous  abreuve,  sa  chair  vous  rassasie.  Vous  ne 
paissez  pas  le  troupeau,  vous  vous  en  paissez!'"  Malchus  ne 
peut  plus  se  contenir.  II  interpelle  violemment  Jean-Baptiste 
dont  les  reponses  calmes  et  dignes  refutent  ses  injures 
forcenees.  Vaincu,  fou  de  rage,  le  pharisien  se  retire  en 
annonjant  que  la  mort  punira  sans  retard  les  blasphemes 
sacrileges  de  I'impie. 

Le  chant  indigne  du  Choeur  fletrit  I'infamie  des  "  severi 
hypocritce." 

Malchus  s'est  calme ;  il  peut  apprecier  les  choses  d'un  esprit 
plus  rassis.  Pour  sevir  contre  I'impie,  il  n'a  rien  a  attendre  du 
peuple  devoue  a  son  prophets  et  du  roi  dont  la  faiblesse  craint 
d'exciter  la  colere  du  peuple.  Tout  son  espoir  se  fonde  sur  la 
reine :  depuis  que  Jean-Baptiste  a  blame  publiquement  son 
union  incestueuse  et  adultere  avec  Herode,  elle  ne  cesse  d'etre 
en  fureur  comme  une  tigresse  a  qui  on  a  enleve  ses  petits'  .  .  . 
Mais  elle  arrive  a  propos. 

Pendant  que  la  reine  s'approche,  le  Choeur  se  laments : 

Voioi  la  flammo  qui  vient  vera  la  flamme,  le  poison  qui  s'unit  au  poison. 
Un  peril  extreme  est  instant.^ 

Malchus  n'a  pas  de  peine  a  exciter  le  courroux  de  la  reine, 
mais  il  sait  le  maitriser;  il  demontre — en  multipliant  les 
maximes  et  les  comparaisons  a  la  maniere  de  Seneque — qu'il 
f  aut  employer  la  patience  et  I'adresse : 

L'effort  continu  vient  k  bout  de  ce  que  la  violence  ne  peut  accomplir.  Le 
chene  i51ev^  ne  torabe  pas  du  premier  coup ;  le  biilier  dont  on  se  sert  ^  la 
guerre  ne  renverse  pas  les  murs  au  premier  choc.'' 

Que  la  reine  use  done  de  larmes  et  de  prieres ;  qu'elle  se 
confie  aux  ruses  perfides. 

Le  Choeur,  qui  pleurait  la  victoire  des  mechants  sur  le 
"  fius  vates,"  interrompt  son  triste  cantique.  II  a  aper9u 
Jean-Baptiste;     il    lui    dit    le    danger    qui    le    menace.      Aux 

'  Baptistes,  v.  750  :  ...  grogem  non  pasoitis,  vos  pascitis, 

Cf.  F6nelon,  Sacre  de  VEkcUur  de  Cologne,  ii.  2 :  lis  ne  paissent  point  le 
troupeau,  c'est  du  troupeau  qu'ils  so  paissent  oux-momes. 
''  Baptistes,  v.  886  :  Rogina  tigris  orba  cou  catulis  furons. 
^  Baptistes,  v.  894-895. 
"  Baptistes,  v.  903-906. 


Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan  121 

paroles  affectueuses  du  Choeur,  le  prophete  repond  avec 
riieroisme  enthousiaste  d'un  Saint-Genest  ou  d'un  Polyeucte : 
si  le  roi  Herode  le  menace  de  mort,  le  roi  des  cieux  lui  dit  de 
ne  pas  craindre  la  mort  et  lui  prepare  sa  recompense.'  Le 
Choeur  est  persuade  par  I'eloquence  de  Jean-Baptiste ;  comme 
lui,  il  aspire  a  s'evader  de  la  prison  de  la  vie  pour  jouir  dans 
le  sejour  celeste  des  felicites  eternelles. 

La  reine  a  reussi :  sa  fiUe  a  charme  par  sa  danse  Herode, 
qui  s'est  engage  par  serment  a  lui  accorder  ce  qu'elle 
demanderait.  Elle  a  exige  qua  sa  fille  demandat  au  roi  de  lui 
faire  presenter  sur  un  plat  la  tete  de  Jean-Baptiste.  La 
demande  n'a  pas  encore  ete  faite.  La  reine  redoute  toujours 
les  indecisions  de  son  mari.  Elle  le  voit,  anxieuse,  s'avancer 
avec  jeune  fille. 

Dans  une  scene  tres  bien  conduite,^  le  roi  rappelle  sa  pro- 
mesae ;  apres  lui  avoir  fait  renouveler  son  serment,  la  jeune  fille 
exige  la  tete  de  Jean-Baptiste.  Herode  est  frappe  de  stupeur ; 
il  essaie  de  pretexter  qu'un  pareil  present  ne  convient  pas  a 
une  jeune  fille;  il  dit  quelle  sera  la  colere  du  peuple.  La  fille 
de  la  reine  a  reponse  a  tout ;  la  reine  elle-meme  a  recours  aux 
pires  maximes  que  les  tyrans  du  theatre  de  Seneque  se  plaisent 
a  repeter  pour  prouver  qu'un  roi  a  le  droit  absolu  de  faire  ce 
qu'il  lui  plait.  Herode  est  lie  par  son  serment.  II  se  resigne  a 
livrer  le  prophete  aux  deux  femmes,  en  les  suppliant  de  ne  pas 
le  mettre  a  mort,  en  les  avertissant  que  si  elles  le  condamnent 
a  un  chatiment  cruel,  toute  I'horreur  de  I'acte  qu'elles  auront 
commis  retombera  sur  elles. 

Le  Choeur  ne  peut  comprendre  une  telle  barbarie.  Le  sang 
des  prophetes  crie  vengeance.  Herode  sera  puni.  .  .  Mais 
voici  un  messager  qui  cherche  les  amis  de  Jean-Baptiste  pour 
leur  annoncer  une  triste  nouvelle.  II  a  ete  tue ;  sa  tete  a  ete 
presentee  a  la  fille  de  la  reine ;  mais  a  quoi  bon  les  larmes  ? 
Qu'a-t-il  a  craindre  de  la  mort,  celui  qui  a  bien  vecu?  .  .  . 
Le  Choeur  cesse  de  se  lamenter  en  reflechissant  qu'une  longue 
vie  n'est  autre  chose  qu'une  longue  chaine  de  malheurs  dont  les 
anneaux  se  terminent  a  la  mort.  .  .  Mais  I'imbecillite 
humaine  qui  ne  comprend  pas  la  servitude  de  la  vie  a  horreur 
de  la  mort  liber atrice.^ 

La  tragedie  de  Buchanan  met  habilement  en  scene  I'episode 

1  Baptistes,  v.  1026-1030.  ^  Baptistes,  v.  1184-1263. 

2  Baptistes,  v.  1356-1360. 


122  Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan 

de  la  mort  de  Jean-Baptiste,  tel  qu'il  est  raconte  dans  VEvan- 
gile  sflun  Saint-Marc  (vi.,  17-28),  ou  il  est  egalement  parle  du 
respect  qu'Herode  Antipas  professait  pour  Jean,  qu'il  savait 
etre  un  juste  et  un  saint  et  qu'il  consultait  volontiers. 

Mais  les  personnages  de  la  piece  semblent  des  contemporains 
connus  de  I'auteur  du  Franciscanus.  Le  pharisien  Malchus 
n'a  aucun  rapport  avec  le  serviteur  du  souverain  sacrificateur 
Caiphe,  ce  Malchus  a  qui,  dans  son  zele  imprudent,  Pierre 
coupe  I'oreille  d'un  coup  d'epee : '  mais  il  ressemble  comme  un 
frere  au  cardinal  Beaton,  dont  les  calomnies  persecutaient  le 
poete  de  Baptistes  sive  Calumnia.  Gamaliel,  le  rabbin  pieux 
et  bienveillant  qui  protege  Jean-Baptiste,  peut  etre  a  la  rigueur 
identifie  avec  le  celebre  pharisien  Gamaliel  dont  saint  Paul 
s'honore  d'avoir  ete  I'eleve :  ^  mais  il  nous  fait  penser  a 
Charles  de  Grammont,  archeveque  de  Bordeaux  de  1530  a 
1544,  gouverneur  de  la  province  de  Guyenne  en  I'absence  du 
lieutenant-general  Henri  de  Navarre.  Protecteur  des  lettres, 
Charles  de  Grammont  s'interessait  particulierement  au  College 
de  Bordeaux ;  tres  puissant — il  fut  pendant  longtemps  une 
sorte  de  vice-roi  de  Guyenne" — il  pouvait  proteger  et  il  pro- 
tegea  efficacement  Buchanan  contre  la  haine  du  cardinal 
Beaton. 

Quant  aux  acteurs  du  drame  qui  ont  joue  reellement  un 
role  dans  I'histoire  des  Juifs,  les  admirations  ou  les  rancunes 
de  Buchanan  doivent  les  avoir  profondement  modifies  potir  les 
faire  ressembler  a  des  heros  de  I'histoire  d'Ecosse  au  XVI' 
siecle. 

Ce  Jean-Baptiste,  prophete  enthousiaste  et  orateur  habile, 
comme  un  futur  martyr  qui  aurait  passe  par  les  Universites 
avant  de  monter  sur  le  bucher,  ne  doit-il  pas  avoir  pour  type 
Patrick  Hamilton,  le  premier  apotre  de  la  Reforme  en  Ecosse? 
Ne  a  Glascow  en  1503,  etudiant  a  Paris  et  a  Louvain,  profes- 
seur  des  1523  a  Saint-Andrews  ou  Buchanan,  qui  suivait  les 
cours  de  John  Mair  en  1524,  dut  le  connaitre  et  I'admirer, 
Hamilton  prechait  les  idees  nouvelles  avoc  une  ardeur  qui 
attira  I'attention  des  pretres.  Convaincu  d'horosic  dans  un 
conscil  d'eveques  preside  par  le  cardinal  Beaton,  il  fut  con- 
damne  et  mourut  sur   Ic  bilchcr,   en  fevrier   1527.     l-'Histoire 

'  ISmmijilr.  srlon  Sainf-Jntii,  xviii.,  10-11. 

'•^  Ai-li'H  ilcK  A/ifih-cn,  xxii.,  .'!. 

■'JuUiaii,  llisldirv  lit:  l!orilniu.y,  Bimloaiix,  ISOfi,  p.  \¥M. 


Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan  123 

d'Ecosse,  redigee  par  Buchanan  a  la  fin  de  sa  carriere,  rendait 
un  hommage  emu  a  cette  noble  victime  d'un  complot 
ecclesiastique — juvenis  ingenio  summo  et  eriiditione  singulari, 
conjuratione  saeerdotum  opjtressiis.^  II  se  peut  que  sa 
premiere  tragedie  ait  voulu  faire  revivre  I'apotre  de  I'Ecosse  en 
la  personne  du  Precurseur. 

L'audace  des  allusions  explique  pourquoi  I'auteur  de 
Baptistes  sive  Calumnia  retarda  si  longtemps  la  publication  de 
sa  piece.  En  effet,  sans  pretendre  assimiler  a  la  femme 
d'Herode  Marie  de  Guise,  I'ennemie  impitoyable  de  quiconque 
etait  suspect  de  lutheranisme,  on  ne  peut  s'empecher  de 
remarquer  que  bien  des  traits  du  caractere  de  ce  pusillanime 
roi  des  Juifs,  qui  a  peur  de  sa  femme  et  qui  cherche  par  tous 
les  moyens  a  ne  pas  perdre  I'affection  de  son  peuple,  qui 
respecte  Jean-Baptiste  et  le  laisse  mettre  a  mort,  conviennent 
parfaitement  au  faible  Jacques  V.,  qui  se  consumait  en  efforts 
continuels  pour  plaire  au  peuple  et  meriter  le  titre  de  "  King 
of  Commons,"  qui  abandonnait  Buchanan  aux  coleres  de 
Beaton,  apres  lui  avoir  demande  de  composer  une  satire  contre 
les  Franciscains,  qui,  docile  aux  instigations  de  la  reine,  faisait 
bruler  les  heretiques  a  Glascow  et  a  Edinburgh. 

Tous  les  personnages  de  la  tragedie  sont  bien  vivants. 
Jean-Baptiste  parle  avec  une  eloquence  admirable  et  agit  comma 
Polyeucte.  Malchus  fait  penser  au  Mathan  d'Athalie  et  au 
Narcisse  de  Brifannieiis.  L'empereur  Claude  est  traite  moins 
durement  dans  le  Ludus  de  Seneque  le  philosophe  que  le  roi 
Jacques  V.  dans  le  Baptistes  de  Buchanan.  Herode  n'est  plus 
meme  Prusias,  qui  tremble  devant  sa  femme  Arsinoe  et  qui 
a  toujours  peur  de  se  brouiller  avec  les  Romains ;  c'est  le  bon- 
homme  Chrysale  des  Femmes  Savantes,  qui  sacrifie,  tout  en 
plaignant  la  "  pauvre  enfant,"  Martina,  la  servante  de  cuisine, 
aux  indignations  grammaticales  de  sa  femme  Philaminte  et  de 
sa  soeur  Belise. 

On  peut,  sans  doute,  reprocher  a  ce  drama,  si  fort  et  si 
interessant,  bien  des  defauts  qui  precedent  d'une  imitation 
trop  attentive  du  theatre  de  Seneque.  On  note  I'abus  des 
declamations  et  des  monologues;  rien  ne  prepare  et  ne  rend 
necessaire  I'entree  en  scene  des  divers  personnages.  Les  chants 
du    Choeur    sont    trop    longs    et    leurs    digressions    s'eloignent 

1  Rerum  Scoticarum  HiMoriae,  lib.  XIV.  cap.  xxxii.  (Buclianani  Opera 
Omnia,  ^dit.  de  1725,  t.  I.,  p.  489). 


124  Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan 

souvent  beaucoup  du  sujet  de  la  piece.  II  n'y  a  aucun  souci 
de  la  "  couleur  locale."  L'erudition  profane  des  Juifs  con- 
temporains  d'llerode  est  parfois  etrange.  Le  Choeur,  qui 
emprunte  des  comparaisons  savantes  a  I'ecole  des  declamateurs 
dent  Seneque  a  ete  apres  Ovide  un  brillanfc  eleve,  parle  trop  de 
la  flamme  du  Vesuve,  des  monstres  nes  sur  les  bords  du  Gauge 
et  dans  les  antres  du  Caucase.' 

Jean-Baptiste,  qui  connait  lui  aussi  les  frimas  du  Caucase,^ 
possede  une  science  mythologique  qui  conviendrait  mieux 
a  Patrick  Hamilton  qu'a  un  prophets  hebreu:  il  disserte  sur 
les  Eumenides  a  la  chevelure  de  serpents,  sur  I'avide  Cerbere, 
sur  Tantale  qui  souffre  toujours  de  la  faim  et  de  la  soif,  sur  les 
Sirenes  puissantes  par  leurs  charmes  magiques.^ 

Mais  il  ne  faut  pas  oublier  que  Buchanan  ecrivait  Baptistes 
sive  Calumnia  pour  les  eleves  du  College  de  Guyenne ;  au 
xvi°  siecle,  toute  cette  mythologie  avait  droit  de  cite  dans  les 
ecoles.  II  est  interessant  de  noter  que,  dans  la  predication 
oil  il  celebre,  longtemps  avant  Racine  et  presque  avec  les 
memes  termes,  la  bonte  de  Dieu  qui  commande  au  printemps 
de  parer  la  campagne  de  sa  peinture  de  fleurs,  a  I'ete  de  faire 
naitre  les  fruits,''  Jean-Baptiste  proclame  que,  conformement 
aux  ordres  divins,  Diane  donne  sa  lumiere  a  la  nuit,  Phebus 
sa  lumiere  au  jour.'^  Quand,  dans  sa  traduction  des  Psanmes, 
Buchanan  parlera  en  son  propre  nom,  il  dira  plus  exactement : 
"A  toi  est  le  jour,  a  toi  est  la  nuit;  c'est  toi  qui  pares  de 
rayons  d'or  I'eclat  du  soleil."  " 

Compose  comme  Baptistes  sive  Calumnia  pour  etre  joue  au 
College  de  Guyenne,  Jephthes  sive  Votum  abonde  lui  aussi  en 
comparaisons  mythologiques  et  en  allusions  geographiques  peu 
convenables  au  milieu  oil  Taction  se  passe.' 

'  Baptistes,  v.  296,  320,  322. 

2  Baptistes,  v.  1087. 

3  Baptistes,  v.  1126-1129,  v.  1133. 

''  Baptistes,  v.  701  :  Jussu  tuo  ver  pingit  arva  floribus, 

Frugea  dat  testas,  fundit  autumnua  morum. 
Cf.  Athalie,  I.,  iv.,  v.  323  :  II  donne  aux  fleurs  lour  iiimable  peinture, 

II  fait  naitre  ot  mftiir  lea  fruita. 
■■  Baptistes,  v.  706  :  Noclem  Diana,  Phn^bus  iucondit  diem. 
°  Psalm.,  Ixxxiv.,  16  (Buclianani  Opera  omnia,  ^dit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  83) : 
Tuus  dies  est ;  nox  tua  eat ;  solia  jubar 
Radiis  adornas  auroia. 
'  Je  me  oontcnte  dc  oiLor  co  paaaage  od  lo  Chanir,  oonipoa^  de  jeunea  fiUea 
larafilitoa,  s'oooupe  doa  peuploa  qui  boivent  loa  oaux  du  Tage. 


Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan  125 

Mais,  si  la  forme  des  deux  tragedies  est  la  meme,  puia- 
qu'elles  sonfc  ecrites  Tune  et  I'autre  suivanfc  le  modele  fourni 
par  le  theatre  de  Seneque,  le  fond  est  loin  d'etre  le  meme. 

Je  ne  crois  pas  que  Ton  puisse  relever  dans  Jephthes  rien 
qui  se  rapporte  a  des  personnages  contemporains  de  I'auteur ; 
le  traducteur  d'Alceste  et  de  Medee  emprunte  beaucoup  a 
riphigenie  et  a  la  Polyxene  d'Euripide  pour  etablir  le  role  de 
la  fille  de  Jephthe.  II  serait  trop  long  de  faire  minutieusement 
la  liste  de  toutes  ces  imitations  dont  I'analyse  de  Jephthes 
donnera  une  idee. 

Les  deux  sujets  offrant  beaucoup  de  traits  communs,  il  n'est 
pas  etonnant  que  Ton  trouve  de  nombreuses  ressemblances 
entre  la  tragedie  latine  de  Buchanan  et  Abraham  sacrifiant, 
tragedie  frangoise  de  Theodore  de  Beze,  qui  fut  imprimee  en 
1550.  Buchanan  connaissait  Theodore  de  Beze:  il  lui 
envoyait — nous  ne  savons  a  quelle  epoque — ceux  de  ses  poemes 
qu'il  avait  composes  en  Ecosse,  recommandes  par  une  dedicace 
tres  modeste.^  Peut-etre,  avant  d'ecrire  sa  tragedie  franqoise, 
I'auteur  A' Abraham  sacrifiant  avait-il  lu  Jephthes  sive  Votum 
en  manuscrit. 

On  pent  aussi  trouver  un  certain  nombre  de  ressemblances 
entre  le  Jephthes  et  VIphigenie  de  Racine.  Mais,  comme  les 
deux  pieces  s'inspirent  I'une  et  I'autre  de  la  tragedie  d'Euripide, 
il  est  diflBcile  de  discerner  si  le  poete  d'Iphigenie  a  parfois 
imite  directement  le  latin  de  Buchanan.^ 

JJEvangile  selon  Saint-Marc  donnait  les  evenements  et  les 
heros  du  Baptistes;  I'auteur  n'avait  qu'a  imaginer  les  person- 
nages de  Malchus  et  de  Gamaliel.  Pour  le  Jephthes  sive 
Votum,  le  chapitre  xi.  du  Livre  des  Juges  offrait  plutot  le  sujet 

V.  396  :  ...  quique  bibit  Tagum 

Fulvo  gurgite  nobilem. 
Ces  vers  n'auraient-ils  pas  kti  ajoutes  pour  une  representation  de  Jephthes 
donnte  au  College  des  Arts  de  Coimbre,  alors  qui  Buchanan  y  i5tait  professeur  ? 
1  Hendecasyllahon  liber,  x.  {Buchanani  Opera  omnia,  edit,  de  1725,  t.  II., 
p.  348).     Ad  Theodorum  Bezam. 

V.  3  ;  Ad  te  carmina  mitto,  nee  Latino 

Neo  Grajo  sale  tinota,  sed  Britannis 
Nata  in  montibus  horrida  sub  Arcto. 
'■^  Dans  son  edition  classique  d' IjM'j^nie  (Paris,  Delagrave,  1881),  N.  M. 
Bernardin  indique  les  passages  de  Jephthes  qui  se  rapprochent  le  plus  du  texte 
de  la  tragedie  de  Racine.  Voir  les  notes  3  de  la  page  38,  3  de  la  page  70,  2  de 
la  page  105,  1  de  la  page  108,  2  et  3  de  la  page  111,  3  de  la  page  130,  2  de  la 
page  134. 


126  Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan 

d'un  developpement  epique  ou  elegiaque  que  la  matiere  d'une 
tragedie. 

Au  moment  de  passer  dana  le  pays  des  Hammonites  qu'il  va 
combattre,  Jephthe  promet  a  TEternel  que,  s'il  est  vainqueur, 
il  lui  oUrira  en  holocauste  ce  qui,  lorsqu'il  reviendra  de  la 
guerre,  sortira  des  portes  de  sa  maison  au  devant  de  lui. 
Quand  il  rentre  victorieux  a  Mitspa,  en  sa  demeure,  sa  fille 
unique  s'avance  a  sa  rencontre.  Instruite  du  voeu  imprudent! 
de  son  pere,  elle  se  soumet  et  demande  seulement  qu'il  lui  soit 
accorde  d'aller  pendant  deux  mois  pleurer  avec  ses  amies  sa 
virginite  sur  les  montagnes.  Au  bout  des  deux  mois,  elle 
retourne  vers  son  pere  qui  la  sacrifie,  suivant  le  voeu  qu'il 
avait  fait. 

Le  texte  de  la  Bible  ne  donne  que  les  deux  personnages  du 
pere  et  de  la  fille.  Buchanan  a  du  imaginer  ceux  de  la  femme 
et  d'un  confident  de  Jephthe ;  il  a  eu  I'etrange  idee  de  leur 
imposer  des  noms  grecs, — Storge  et  Symmachus — ainsi  d'ail- 
leurs  qu'a  la  jeune  fille  qu'il  appelle  IpJiis. 

Le  prologue  explicatif  est  dit  par  un  ange  qui  annonce  le 
sujet  et  les  peripeties  du  drame :  si  I'Eternel  a  decide  de  con- 
traindre  Jephthe  a  ce  cruel  sacrifice,  c'est  pour  qu'il  n'attribue 
pas  a  son  merite  une  victoire  qui  appartient  a  la  puissance 
divine,  c'est  pour  que  le  succes  n'enorgueillisse  pas  son  cceur. 

Storge  eutre  en  scene  avec  Iphis.  La  mere  est  accablee  de 
tristessc :  elle  a  vu  en  songe  un  loup  qui  arrachait  une  jeune 
brebis  de  ses  bras  pour  la  devorer ;  si  ce  songe  est  un  presage 
funeste  pour  sa  fille,  que  Dieu  daigne  la  faire  mourir  elle- 
niemc  avant  qu'elle  ait  vu  se  produire  le  malheur  qu'elle 
redoute !  Iphis  essaie  de  consoler  sa  mere :  qu'elle  attende 
avec  confiance  le  retour  de  Jephthe,  victorieux  de  ses  ennemis. 
Storge  ne  vcut  pas  se  laisscr  rassurer ;  depuis  son  cnfance,  elle 
a  ete  temoin  des  miseres  du  peuple  d'Israel ;  il  lui  est  impossible 
de  no  pas  craindre  quelque  desastre  plus  affrcux  encore. 

Le  Choeur,  compose  de  jeunes  fillcs  du  pays,  supplie  Dieu 
de  mcttro  un  tor  me  a  la  servitude  des  Juifs  soumis  depuis 
longtemps  aux  Hammonites.  .  .  Mais  les  jeunes  filles 
aporyoivent  au  loin  un  messagor  qui  arrive,  sans  doute,  de 
I'armee ;  elles  interrompcnt  lours  chants,  et  attendent, 
anxieuses.     Le  mcssager  s'informe  do  la  demeure  de  Jephthe. 

—  Coat  ici  la  iniiiaoii  do  Jephtlio,  ot  voici  sa  fille.  Mais,  si  tu  le  peux, 
dis-nous  quelle  ospi5ranoo  tu  iions  apportes  ! 


Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan  127 

—  Je  suis  justement  envoy6  pour  faire  le  ri5cit  ties  ev&iemsnts.  Les 
eiiueniia  out  6te  disperses,  mis  eii  fuite.  C'est  uue  grande  viotoire,  une  grande 
gloire.  Notre  arnice  est  saine  et  sauve.  Voili  le  resumi  de  oe  que  j'avais  ii 
annonoer. 

—  C'est  beaucoup  dire  en  pen  de  mots  !  Mais  explique-nous  si  tu  conuais 
la  aiotoire  par  oni-dire  ou  si  tu  I'as  vue  toi-meme.' 

Le  messager  s'empresse  de  faire  un  long  recit  de  la  bataille 
a  laquelle  il  a  pris  part.  Le  Choeur  chante  les  louanges  de 
I'Eternel  qui  a  permis  aux  enfants  d'Israel  de  vaincre  les 
Hammonites.  Jephthe  arrive.  II  commence  par  prononcer 
une  longue  action  de  graces,  abondante  en  pieuses  maximes ;  il 
s'engage  de  nouveau  a  tenir  sa  promesse  envers  Dieu,  qui  a 
exauce  sa  priere  et  lui  a  donne  la  viotoire.  C'est  alors  qu'Iphis, 
pleine  de  joie,  vient  se  jeter  dans  les  bras  du  vainqueur  qui  se 
detourue  d'elle.  La  scene  entre  le  pere  et  la  fille  est  tres  bien 
menee ;  elle  a  une  veritable  grandeur  tragique ;  Buchanan  se 
souvient  heureusement  de  1' Agamemnon  et  de  I'lphigenie 
d'Euripide.  La  jeune  fille  supplie  son  pere  de  songer  au 
sacrifice  qu'il  faut  offrir  a  Dieu. 

—  Puisque  le  suoces  de  ton  expedition  a  6t6  si  heureux,  mon  p6re,  il  con- 
vient  de  prier  et  d'aecomplir  tes  vceux.'^ 

Jephthe  essaie  de  congedier  Iphis  dont  les  paroles  le  mettent 
a  la  torture : 

Veille  i  ce  que  tout  soit  en  bon  ordre  a  la  maison  ;  ob(Sis  a  ton  pere.  Tu 
reviendras  bientot  vers  nous.  Car  il  faut  que  tu  assistes  au  sacrifice  dans  un 
instant.^ 

II  se  retire  lui-meme.  Iphis  ne  peut  com  prendre  la  froideur 
de  son  pere ;  qu'a-t-il  a  lui  reprocher,  de  quelle  faute  la  soup- 
5onne-t-il  ?  Mais  le  meillcur  remede  aux  angoisses  qui  I'etrei- 
gnent,  c'est  de  jouir  d'une  conscience  pure.'  "  Bien  parle, 
digne  fille  d'un  pere  vainqueur  et  d'une  chaste  mere,''  "  dit 
Symmachus,  c^ui  vient  feliciter  son  ami.  Sur  les  instances  du 
Choeur,  il  promet  qu'il  aura  vite  fait  d'apprendre  le  secret  de  la 
tristosse  de  Jephthe  et  qu'il  se  hatera  de  le  dire  a  Iphis. 

Le  Choeur  deplore  la  severite  des  parents  qui  se  laissent  aller 
a  soupgonner  injustement  leurs  enfants.^ 

'^  Jephthea  {Buclianani  Opera  omnia,  6dit.  de  1725,  t.  II.,  p.  173-213),  v. 
•227-233. 

2  Jephthes,  v.  530-531.  •'  Jephthes,  v.  546-549. 

^  JepUhim,  V.  567-568.  ''  Jephthes,  v.  569-570. 

6  Jephthes,  v.  593-617. 


128  Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan 

Symmachus  a  rencontre  Jephth^ ;  il  s'etonne  de  la  desola- 
tion de  son  ami  en  un  jour  oii  sa  victoire  devrait  le  mettre  au 
comble  de  la  joie.  Apres  avoir  developpe  de  nombreux  lieux 
communs  sur  la  "  grata  sortis  intuncB  securitas  "  et  les  malheurs 
inseparables  de  la  gloire  que  le  vulgaire  en  vie/  le  vainqueur 
des  Hammonites  se  decide  a  decouvrir  la  blessure  qui  le  tue. 
Symmachus  essaie  de  lui  prouver  qu'il  n'est  pas  engage  par  un 
voeu  temeraire.  Le  Choeur,  qui  comprend  maintenant  le  motif 
de  la  tristesse  inquiete  de  Jephthe,  le  supplie  d'etre  docile  aux 
avis  d'un  sage  conseiller,  car  le  repentir  accompagne  les  actes 
accomplis  a  la  legere.^ 

Restees  seules,  les  jeunes  filles  expriment  Tespoir  que  leur 
compagne  echappera  a  la  mort  dont  elle  est  menacee  par 
I'imprudence  de  son  pere. 

Jephthe  va  consulter  un  pretre.  Dieu,  lui  est-il  declare, 
ne  dcmande  pas  le  sang  des  victimes ;  il  exige  comme  oSrande 
un  esprit  pieux  et  une  conscience  pure.''  Existe-t-il,  d'ailleurs, 
uno  loi  qui  ordonne  aux  peres  d'immoler  leurs  enfants  1  II  en 
existe  une,  replique  le  malheureux  pere,  qui  ordonne  d'accom- 
plir  les  voeux  auxquels  on  s'est  engage.''  La  discussion  est 
longue  et  ardente ;  toute  la  casuistique  du  pretre,  qui 
argumcute  mieux  que  ne  pourrait  le  faire  un  Franciscain, 
echoue  en  face  de  la  ferme  resolution  de  Jephthe : 

—  II  vous  plait  (I'cti-e  regardds  comme  les  ministres  de  la  sagesse.  Quant 
k  moi,  je  priifore  la  simple,  la  brutale  vdrit6  i,  toute  oette  science  brillante  du 
fard  de  I'impietiS.^ 

Le  Choeur  se  lamente  sur  le  sort  malheureux  de  Storge,  qui 
va  voir  perir  Iphis. 

La  famille  desolee  entre  en  scune ;  la  mere  pleure  sur  son 
enfant.     Jephthe  est  inebranlable. 

—  Seul,  je  suis  foro6  de  commottre  cette  action  atrooe  ct  d'en  souffrir. 

—  Mais  c'est  volontairement,  de  ton  plein  gr6,  que  tu  to  forces  i  la  com- 
mottre.' 

Jephthe  doit  soutenir  une  discussion  semblable  a  celle  qu'il 
a  deja  eue  avcc  le  pretre.  La  dialectique  do  Storge  est  faible; 
mais  son  coour  maternel  a  dos  arguments  irrcsistiblcs.     Le  pere 

'  Jrphthea,  v.  649  :  rrteclara  dictu  res  honor,  victoria, 
Docus,  triuniphus,  parta  bello  gloria. 

—  Jephthe^,  v.  7S'2-783.  ■'  Jcjihlhes,  v.  89S-S99. 
'Juphlheu,  V.  910-911.                                         <■  Jt'pluhes,  v.  1053-10o5. 

^Jcphthcs,  V.  1159-1160. 


Les  tragedies  religieuses  de  Buchanan  129 

doit  repousser  les  supplications  de  sa  fille  qui  ne  veut  pas 
mourir.  II  prend  sur  lui  toute  la  responsabilite  du  crime  qu'il 
doit  commettre  et  qu'il  commettra,  puisqu'il  s'y  est  engage 
devant  Dieu.  Vaincue  par  cet  heroisme,  sure  de  la  tendresse 
profonde  de  son  pere  qui  la  voue  malgre  lui  a  la  mort,  Iphis 
se  soumet  aux  consequences  de  la  promesse  temeraire  de 
Jephthe  avec  une  sublime  resignation  qui  excite  I'enthousiasme 
du  Choeur. 

La  mere  voudrait  esperer  encore :  un  messager  vient  lui 
faire  un  long  recit  de  la  mort  heroique  de  sa  fille  oii  elle  doit 
trouver  une  consolation.^  Storge  repousse  cette  consolation: 
le  courage  d'Iphis  en  face  de  la  mort  ne  fait  qu'exasperer  la 
douleur  qui  angoisse  son  ame.^ 

'  On  voit  que  Buchanan  se  soumet  par  avance  aux  rigueurs  de  Tunit^  de 
temps,  telles  que  le  XVII"-  si^ele  devait  les  imposer.  La  fille  de  son  Jephth6 
ne  demande  pas  un  d^lai  de  deux  mois  pour  aller  pleurer  sur  les  montagnes. 
Sa  trag^die  montre  "  en  un  jour  un  seul  fait  accompli."  Cast  sans  raison  que 
Vossius  (Inst.  Poet.  II.,  III.),  lui  reproche  de  prolonger  I'aotion  pendant  une 
dur6e  de  deux  mois  au  moins. 

2  Jephlhea,  v.  1445-1450. 

H.  DE  LA  V.  DE  M. 


XIV. 

Buchanan's  "Baptistes":  Was  it  translated 
by  Milton  ? 

The  Rev.  Francis  Peck,  Prebendary  of  Lincoln,  made  a 
literary  suggestion  that  was  certainly  apposite  when  he  described 
the  translation  of  Buchanan's  Baptistes  which  he  edited  as  the 
work  of  Milton.  Milton  and  Buchanan  had  various  literary 
characteristics  in  common,  and  a  work  in  which  these  character- 
istics on  the  part  of  Buchanan  were  remarkably  illustrated  might 
readily  have  induced  Milton  to  render  it  into  English.  The 
Prebendary  also  conveyed  a  sincere  compliment  to  Buchanan  in 
the  course  of  his  researches  on  the  subject.  It  was  only  after  his 
investigations  were  well  advanced  that  he  was  led  to  consider  the 
original  author  to  be  Buchanan.  He  entered  upon  his  scheme 
of  editorial  exposition  under  the  belief  that  the  drama  was  an 
original  composition  of  Milton's.  He  elaborated  his  theory  of 
Milton's  translation  of  the  piece  with  an  ingenuity  great  as  his 
prefatory  boldness.  Of  this  skilfulness  it  must  be  said  that  it 
shows  an  uncommon  innate  faculty  for  conjecture.  The  con- 
cluding link  of  his  glistering  chain  of  evidence  may  be  regarded 
as  somewhat  the  most  dazzling  if  not  the  strongest  of  the  series. 
Here  he  proceeds  upon  the  daring  assumption  that  it  is  fair  to 
think  of  Milton  in  the  wholly  new  character  of  a  literary  juggler. 
Regarding  the  words  on  the  title-page  of  the  pamphlet — And 
presented  to  the  King's  Most  Excellent  Majesty  hy  the  Author — 
which  form  a  veiled  summary  of  Buchanan's  dedication  to  James 
I.,  he  speaks  as  follows :  — "  Which  crafty  trick  of  his  makes  the 
translator  to  pass  for  an  author;  and,  if  he  was  found  out, 
furnished  him  with  a  very  ready  salvo,  that  it  was  the  author 
(Buchanan),  and  not  him  the  translator  (Milton)  who  presented 
it  to  the  King's  most  excellent  majesty."  The  attitude  here 
depicted  is  quite  un-Miltonic. 

The  appropriateness  of  Milton's  acting  as  a  translator  of  a 
poem  by  Buchanan  is  undoubtedly  considerable.       Buchanan's 


Buchanan's  "Baptistes"  131 

mind  had  two  distinct  phases :  the  one  was  in  close  affinity  with 
the  genius  of  Dryden,  the  other  had  an  equally  intimate 
resemblance  to  the  genius  of  Milton.  Like  Dryden,  he  was 
practical,  witty,  an  expert  critic  of  human  folly.  Like  Milton, 
he  was  austere,  idyllic  in  thought,  and  also  an  accomplished 
exponent  of  the  inner  meaning  of  words.  The  individual 
examples  of  his  mental  similitude  to  Milton  are  striking.  The 
Maice  Calendte  of  the  "  Elegies "  almost  at  once  suggests 
L' Allegro.  The  outline  of  the  elder  poet's  narrative  has  the 
same  vividness ;  the  personages,  the  scenic  effects,  the  true 
pastoral  fashion  of  its  events,  are  all  coloured  with  a  natural 
magic  which  re-appears  in  Milton's  song  of  the  earth's  gladness. 
And  the  festive  burden  of  the  story  is  handed  on  from  the  one 
poet  to  the  other :  — 

Carpe  roeas  et,  ni  oarpas,  peritura  ligustra, 
Et  vitae  oredas  haec  simulacra  tu£e. 

Gather  the  rose,  the  privet's  faery  flower, 
Emblems  alike  of  man's  too  transient  hour. 

The  structural  art  at  work  in  Samson  Agonistes  is  also  that  of 
the  Baptistes  and  Je-phthes.  Again,  Milton  pursued  the  general 
argument  of  Buchanan's  Be  Jure  Begni  apud  Scotos  when  he 
wrote  the  Defence  of  the  People  of  England.  And  although  the 
detailed  discussion  is  very  dissimilar  in  the  two  treatises,  there  is 
complete  unison  of  thought  on  the  subject  at  issue.  The  con- 
junction of  two  such  minds  as  those  of  Milton  and  Buchanan  in 
the  rendering  of  the  story  of  the  Baptist  would  have  been  an 
episode  in  our  literature  of  rare  interest.  Unfortunately,  there 
seems  good  reason  to  think  that  the  sole  commendation  of  the 
view  is  its  character  as  a  charming  romance  developed  from  the 
brain  of  a  zealous  antiquary. 

Mr.  Peck  gives  an  unvarnished  account  of  the  rendering 
of  the  Baptistes  which  he  published  as  Milton's.  He  says 
that  having  become  a  keen  student  of  both  Cavalier  and 
Puritan  pamphlets,  he  was  brought  to  the  discovery  of  this  par- 
ticular work.  Its  primary  title  was  Tyrannical  Government 
Anatomized:  or,  a  discourse  concerning  evil  counselors,  being 
the  life  and  death  of  John  the  Baptist.  The  date  was  1642. 
The  original  form  of  the  translation  was  singular  enough.  It 
was  printed  as  if  it  were  prose.  The  fact  that  it  was  a  poem 
occurred  to  the  editor,  he  says,  before  he  had  read  six  lines.  The 


132  Buchanan's  "Baptistes" 

perusal  of  ten  lines  more  convinced  him  that  it  was  a  tragedy. 
Not  much  further  on  he  decided  that  before  him  lay  a  poetical 
achievement  by  Milton.  The  peremptoriness  of  the  verdict 
affords  a  very  appreciable  contrast  to  the  lengthened  list  of 
reasons  which  he  states  on  behalf  of  Milton's  authorship  of  this 
version  of  Buchanan's  drama.  The  chief  of  these  reasons  are 
concerned  with  comparisons  drawn  between  Milton's  style  and 
that  of  the  Baptistes  translator.  External  evidence  is  reduced 
to  a  vanishing  point :  it  takes  shape  only  with  the  mention  of 
Milton's  own  projected  poem  on  the  subject  of  John  the  Baptist. 
Certain  items  of  the  internal  evidence  also  are  curiously  inept. 
The  editor  seeks,  for  example,  to  support  his  plea  by  citing  as 
Milton's  certain  features  that  are  actual  constituents  of  the 
original.  Among  such  elements  may  be  named  these: — "The 
Choice  of  the  Heroes,"  "  The  bitter  aversion  for  the  Clergy  of  all 
sorts  discovered  in  it  "  ;  and  "  The  great  spirit  of  Liberty  which 
runs  through  it."  And  to  this  sort  of  mistake  there  is  added  the 
sweeping  declaration  that  ' '  there  was  no  one  else  but  he  then 
living  (at  least  of  that  party)  who  could  have  done  it  in  such  a 
masterly  way  as  here  we  see  it." 

The  only  parts  of  the  writer's  argument  which  have  pertinence 
are  those  in  which  he  sets  forth  various  resemblances  between 
Milton's  art  and  this  translator's.     They  are  three  in  all :  — 

1.  The  peculiar  Way  of  Spelling. 

2.  The  whole  Manner  and  Turn  of  the  Style. 

3.  The  resemblance  in  structure  between  Samson  Agonistn 
and  the  Baptistes. 

As  both  Prof.  Masson  and  Canon  Beeching  have  perfectly 
established,  Milton  had  a  system  of  spelling  peculiarly  his  own. 
But  this  system  was  not  developed  till  the  composition  of  Paradise 
Lost.  As  a  test  instance  under  this  head  there  may  be  taken 
the  spelling  employed  by  Milton  for  the  personal  pronouns  in  e. 
The  spelling  of  these  pronouns  with  a  double  e  is  frequent  in 
Paradise  Tjosf ;  it  occurs  also  from  time  to  time  in  the  Baptistes 
translation  attributed  to  him.  But  there  are  two  definite 
arguments  against  this  usage  in  the  translation  being  his.  First, 
the  spelling  of  these  words  in  Comns,  which  was  written  almost 
contemporaneously  with  the  English  version  of  Buchanan's 
drama  under  notice,  is  totally  unlike  that  of  this  translation, 
boing    in    fact,    virtually    conformed    to    modern    usage.      The 


Buchanan's  "  Baptistes  "  133 

probability  is  that  had  Milton  been  the  author  of  the 
translation,  the  orthography  adopted  would  have  been  the 
orthography  of  Gomus.  Second,  when  Milton  did  write  the 
double  e  in  the  pronouns,  he  was  carrying  out  a  distinct 
system,  a  system  having  some  resemblance  to  the  practice 
of  Habington  in  his  Castara.  He  differentiates  between 
the  spelling  of  these  pronouns  in  such  a  way  as  to  suggest 
that  emphasis  was  intended.  The  employment  of  the  double 
e  by  Buchanan's  translator  is  indiscriminate,  as  it  was  by 
the  later  Elizabethan  prose  writers.  A  well-defined  instance 
of  Milton's  practice  regarding  these  pronouns  is  subjoined, 
Paradise  Lost,  Book  V.,  11.  893-7:  — 

So  spake  the  Seraph  Abdiel  faithful  found, 
Among  the  faithless,  faithful  only  hee. 
Among  innumerable  false,  unmov'd, 
Unshak'n,  unseduo'd,  unterrifi'd, 
His  Loyaltie  he  kept,  his  Love,  his  Zeale. 

It  may  be  urged  that  the  pronoun  orthography  of  the  trans- 
lation may  mark  a  transition  stage  of  Milton's  system  of  spelling. 
Such  an  idea  would  be  far-fetched. 

2.  The  contention  that  the  whole  turn  of  the  style  of  this 
Baptistes  translation  argues  for  Milton's  workmanship  is  not 
supported  by  any  illustrations  on  the  part  of  the  editor.  He 
simply  affirms  it.  The  true  Miltonic  hall-marks  do  not  stamp 
the  rendering.  Four  of  these  are  of  particular  importance — the 
character  of  Milton's  blank  verse,  his  use  of  inversion,  the  nature 
of  his  language,  and  his  use  of  particular  metres.  The  quality 
of  the  first  of  these  is  individual  and  alone.  Keats  despaired 
of  imitating  it.  In  Milton's  hand  it  maintained  a  uniform  power. 
Something  of  its  fulness  and  wealth  appears  even  in  the 
metrical  fragments  which  he  translated  from  Greek  and  Italian. 
The  blank  verse  of  this  Baptistes  translation  has  never  such  a 
richness  of  quality.  While  the  epithets  of  one  of  our  greatest 
definitions  of  poetry — "deep,  majestic,  smooth,  and  strong" — 
are  admirably  suitable  to  Milton's  blank  verse,  only  one  of  them, 
and  that  the  least  significant,  can  be  fairly  applied  to  the  blank 
verse  of  the  Buchanan  translation  imputed  to  him.  The  use  of 
inversion,'  too,   is  wanting  in  the  metrical  art  of  Buchanan's 

'Mr.  Robert  Bridges  in  his  volume  on  "Milton's  Prosody  "  deals  carefully  ■ 
with  the  question  of  Milton's  "Inversion  of  Rhythm."     What  he  says  on  this 
point  tallies  as  proof  with  the  result  stated  in  the  present  article,  where  only 
Milton's  use  of  linguistic  Inversion  is  considered. 


134  Buchanan's  "  BaptistesJ" 

anonymous  translator.  Inversion,  like  other  literary  devices, 
Milton  employed  at  greater  length  in  his  mature  works  than  in 
those  of  his  early  career.  But  Comus  is  occasionally  marked  by 
it  effectively.  No  parallel  to  the  following  example  and  others 
is  to  be  met  with  in  this  Baptistcs  translation  :  — 

Against  the  opposing  will  and  arm  of  heaven, 
May  never  this  just  sword  be  lifted  up. 

The  argument  from  diction  is  also  adverse  to  Milton's  author- 
ship of  this  translation.  The  diction  of  the  translation,  though 
always  accurate  and  well-minted,  compares  but  ill  with  the 
phrasing  of  Milton.  Comus  is  thus  a  splendid  mosaic.  It  would 
be  fruitless  to  search  the  translation  for  lines  comparable  to 
these :  — 

The  grey-hooded  Even 
Like  a  sad  votarist  in  palmer's  weeds 
Rose  from  the  hindmost  wheels  of  Phoebus  wain. 

Or  to  this  :  — 

Storied  of  old  in  high  immortal  verse. 

Further,  there  is  in  the  piece  a  remarkable  difference  from 
Milton's  work  in  regard  to  peculiarities  of  metre.  Both  Comus 
and  Samson  Agonistes — the  second  drama  may  here  be  fairly  con- 
sidered for  the  sake  of  fuller  comparison — have  metrical  usages 
altogether  different  from  those  of  this  Baptistes  translation.  The 
set  use  of  rhyme  occurs  in  the  lyrical  passages  of  the  earlier 
work,  and  in  the  concluding  lines  of  the  later  one.  The  practice 
is  opposed  to  the  custom  of  Buchanan's  translator.  He 
generally  writes  in  blank  verse,  but  concludes  each  important 
speech  with  a  rhymed  couplet,  exaggerating  a  fashion  of  the 
Elizabethan  dramatists.  The  mere  fact  that  the  lyrical 
passages  in  Comus  are  all  rhymed,  whereas  Buchanan's 
translator  keeps  invariably  to  blank  verse  for  his  choruses, 
militates  against  Milton's  being  held  the  translator.  Samson 
Agonistes,  written  on  the  same  model  as  the  Baptistis,  has  a 
chorus.  But  here  again  the  practice  of  Milton  and  that  of  the 
unknown  translator  are  at  variance.  Milton  employed  for 
his  choruses  those  irregular  measures  which,  thoroughly 
pleasing  and  successful,  virtually  introduced  a  new  element  into 
English  lyrical  verse.     Milton,  it  is  true,    wrote    the    peculiar 


Buchanan's  "Baptistes"  135 

irregular  measures  of  his  Samson  Agonistes  in  his  later  years. 
But  the  absence  from  both  his  dramas  of  the  use  of  the  blank 
verse  in  his  lyrical  monologues  largely  precludes  the  supposition 
that  he  would  at  any  time  have  selected  blank  verse  as  his 
method  of  expression  in  choric  writing. 

3.  That  Milton  in  his  Samson  Agonistes  imitated  the  struc- 
ture of  Buchanan's  two  dramas  is  no  evidence  of  his  having 
translated  the  Baptistes.  It  proves  that  they  were  of  one  mind 
on  a  point  of  literary  art ;  but  it  does  not  prove  more  than  this. 
It  might  be  said  with  very  similar  justice  that  Pope  had  a  hand 
in  the  composition  of  The  Medal  because  he  wrote  The 
Bunciad.  Admiration  Milton  had  for  Buchanan,  and  he  did 
not  hesitate  to  declare  it.  It  may  be  also  admitted  that  he  to 
some  unimportant  degree  imitated  Buchanan's  dramatic  work 
when  he  composed  his  Samson  Agonistes.  But  neither 
admiration  nor  imitation  implies  that  he  actually  translated  one 
of  his  dramas.  The  view  that  he  did  so  from  either  motive 
is  practically  baseless. 

On  the  side  of  the  advocate  of  Milton's  authorship  of 
this  translation,  it  must  be  granted  that  its  general 
literary  merit  is  high.  It  is  accurate  yet  imaginative, 
while  the  verse  has  vigour  as  well  as  music.  Its  literary 
excellence  and  its  strange  history  unite  to  give  it  a 
fascination  which  at  the  time  of  its  discovery  might  well 
have  tended  to  deceive  an  observant  student.  Who  the  name- 
less translator  may  have  been,  it  were  vain  to  attempt  to  settle. 
A  satire  of  much  excellency  long  associated  with  the  genius 
of  Dunbar  is  now  recognised  as  the  work  of  an  unknown  poet. 
What  is  the  record  of  Scottish  lyrical  verse  before  Burns  but  the 
computing  of  nameless  gifted  writers  ?  Anonymous,  too,  must 
be  the  work  under  discussion.  To  the  admirer  of  Buchanan, 
however,  it  is  at  all  events  of  value  that,  while  the  rendering 
cannot  be  Milton's,  it  is  not  unworthy  of  being  regarded  as  his, 
nor  of  the  poetical  fame  of  the  great  Scottish  humanist. 

W.  B. 


XV. 

Buchanan's  Psalms — An  Eighteenth  Century 
Controversy. 

Many  translations  of  the  Psalms  into  Latin  verse  were  made  in 
the  period  of  the  Reformation  and  for  a  century  after  it;  and 
these  differed  very  much  from  each  other.  The  Reformers  who 
took  up  this  piece  of  work  were  more  faithful  to  the  original, 
Beza's  Psalms  being  based  on  the  Hebrew,  and  accompanied  by  a 
literal  Latin  translation  thereof.  The  Humanists  who  translated 
the  Psalms  seem  to  have  worked  from  the  Vulgate,  and  they 
naturally  treated  their  original  with  more  freedom  and  aimed 
at  producing  correct  and  elegant  Latin  verse.  Thus  treated  the 
versified  Psalms  of  more  than  one  Humanist  became  a  school- 
book,  enjoying  on  the  one  hand  the  approval  of  leading 
Reformers,  and  on  the  other  qualified  not  at  least  to  corrupt  the 
Latin  of  schoolboys.  Buchanan's  Psalms  formed  a  schoolbook  in 
Scotland  from  the  end  of  the  sixteenth  to  the  middle  of  the 
nineteenth  century.  Principal  Donaldson,  as  the  readers  of  this 
book  know,  has  a  lively  memory  of  this  feature  of  Scottish 
education.^ 

It  is  curious  to  know  that  the  pre-eminent  excellence  of 
Buchanan's  Psalms,  acknowledged  by  many  of  the  leaders  of  the 
Reformation  and  by  many  great  scholars  in  his  own  day  has  not 
always  been  undisputed  either  in  England  or  in  Scotland.  The 
translation  of  the  Psalms  into  Latin  verse  did  not  cease  in  Scot- 
land with  Buchanan.  I  have  before  me  a  number  of  volumes 
belonging  to  the  eighteenth  century,  which  contain  attempts  of 
the  kind  by  a  considerable  number  of  Scottish  scholars.  And  in 
the  middle  of  the  eighteenth  century  a  regular  attack  was  made 
on  the  use  in  schools  of  Buchanan's  Latin  Psalms,  and  another 
book  of  Latin  Psalms  was  proposed  to  be  substituted  for  it,  at 
'  [See  Appendix  IX.— Ed.] 


Buchanan's  Psalms  137 

least  for  the  lower  forms  of  schools.  The  version  thus  favoured 
was  that  of  Arthur  Johnston ;  and  a  controversy  took  place  as  to 
the  respective  merits  of  Buchanan  and  Johnston,  conducted  with 
considerable  acrimony  and  on  neither  side  very  conclusively.  Of 
that  controversy  this  volume  may  fittingly  contain  some  short 
account. 

Arthur  Johnston  was  a  man  of  very  great  eminence  in  his  day 
and  had  a  curious  career.  He  was  born  at  Keith  Hall  in  Aber- 
deenshire, in  1587,  five  years  after  the  death  of  Buchanan,  gave 
very  early  strong  evidence  of  talent  and  made  his  way  to  the 
University  of  Aberdeen.  After  a  course  there  in  which  he  no 
doubt  attained  great  proficiency  in  Latin,  he  went  abroad,  travel- 
led through  Italy  and  took  a  course  of  medicine  at  the  Univer- 
sity of  Padua,  graduating  M.D.  there.  He  then  passed  through 
other  countries  of  Europe,  especially  Germany,  Holland,  and 
France.  In  the  last  named  he  settled,  being  well  received  there 
on  account  of  his  reputation  as  a  poet,  and  liking  the  country  as 
Buchanan  had  done.  In  fact  he  married  a  French  lady  and 
stayed  in  France  twenty  years.  In  1632  he  returned  to  his 
native  country,  and  at  once  took  such  a  position  that  in  1637  he 
was  made  Rector  of  Aberdeen  University.  It  was  the  Professors 
who  elected  him  to  that  office.  Nor  was  this  the  crowning  act 
of  his  history.  He  migrated  to  the  English  Court,  where  he 
became  physician  to  Charles  I.,  and  died  in  the  year  1641. 

Arthur  Johnston's  version  of  the  Psalms  became  a  popular 
book  and  was  printed  several  times.  His  Psalms  are  all  written 
in  one  metre,  the  elegiac  hexameter  and  pentameter,  except  the 
119th,  which,  as  if  to  show  that  the  writer  did  not  require  to 
limit  himself  to  the  Ovidian  stanza,  is  written  in  as  many  metres 
as  the  Psalm  has  parts,  viz.,  twenty-two.  The  translation 
is  closer  on  the  whole  to  the  original,  and  while  the  whole 
work  shows  a  very  elegant  command  of  Latin  verse  with  much 
true  feeling,  it  is  undoubtedly  easier  to  read,  as  no  doubt 
it  must  have  been  to  write,  than  Buchanan's.  It  is  quite 
intelligible  how  it  came  to  be  thought  that  Johnston's 
Psalms  were  a  better  book  than  Buchanan's,  at  least  for 
beginners.  It  may  also  be  the  case  that  Buchanan  was 
altogether  somewhat  out  of  favour  in  the  early  eighteenth 
century.  Various  attacks  were  at  that  time  made  on  him 
as  a  historian,  and  neither  the  high  Tory  politics  nor  the 
strict    orthodoxy  of  the  day  could  incline  men  to  the  rugged  old 


138  Buchanan's   Psalms 

scholar.  However  that  may  be,  the  middle  of  the  eighteenth 
century  saw  the  Assembly  recommending  Johnston's  Psalms  for 
use  in  schools.  In  the  Acts  of  Assembly  of  the  year  1740,  the 
Assembly  is  found  to  have  before  it  a  petition  of  Mr.  William 
Lauder,  Teacher  (i.e.,  Professor)  of  Humanity  in  Edinburgh, 
craving  the  Church's  recommendation  for  having  taught  in 
schools  Dr.  Arthur  Johnston's  Paraphrase  of  the  Psalms  of 
David  in  Latin  verse,  etc. ;  and  this  recommendation  was  after- 
wards granted.  This  caused  the  friends  of  Buchanan's  Psalms 
to  bestir  themselves  and  to  set  to  work  to  pick  holes  in  John- 
ston's Psalms  in  order  to  discredit  them.  The  controversy  thus 
begun  in  Scotland  soon  crossed  the  border,  and  in  1741  Mr. 
William  Benson,  one  of  the  Auditors  of  the  English  Exchequer, 
who  had  shortly  before  edited  a  new  edition  of  Johnston's 
Psalms,  with  a  Prefatory  Discourse  on  post-classical  Latin 
poetry — a  somewhat  pretentious  and  very  inadequate  treatment 
of  the  subject — issued  a  Supplement  to  his  Prefatory  Discourse, 
in  which  he  throws  aside  all  reserve — he  had  not  formerly  depre- 
ciated Buchanan — and  declares  that  "  Johnston's  translation  of 
the  Psalms  is  in  every  respect  greatly  superior  to  Buchanan's." 
This  challenge  was  met  with  little  delay  by  the  great  Latinist, 
Thomas  Ruddiman  (writer  of  a  Latin  grammar,  parts  of  which 
perhaps  still  live  in  schools)  then  keeper  of  the  Advocates' 
Library  in  Edinburgh,  who  was  in  the  best  position  to  write  on 
the  subject  as  he  had  edited  and  published  handsome  editions 
both  of  Buchanan  and  of  Johnston,  a  few  years  before. 

Other  contributions  were  made  to  the  subject.  Mr.  John 
Love,  schoolmaster  at  Dalkeith,  published,  in  1740,  Buchanan's 
and  Johnston's  Paraphrase  of  the  Psalms  compared,  and  in  the 
same  year  appeared  Calumny  Displayed  by  Mr.  William 
Lauder,  who  also  wrote  a  Preface  to  a  volume  of  Scottish  Musae 
Sacrae  (1739),  containing  Johnston's  Psalms  and  other  transla- 
tions of  parts  of  the  Bible  into  Latin  verse.  The  controversy, 
however,  is  only  fully  developed  in  the  writings  above  mentioned 
of  Benson  and  Ruddiman.  Though  I  find  it  impossible  now  to 
find  any  spark  of  heat  in  its  ashes,  it  affords  several  matters  of 
interest  to  the  historical  student. 

In  the  first  place  Johnston's  friends  appear  to  have  done  for 
him  what  he  had  not  dreamed  of  doing  for  himself,  when  they 
compared  him  with  Buchanan.  In  his  Ad  Lectorem  Elegia,  a 
somewhat  charming  poem  prefixed  to  his  Psalms,  he  admits  that 


ARTHQR  JOHNSTON,   M.D. 

(Physician  to  King  Charles  I. ) 

Who  also  translated  the  Psalms  into  Latin  verse. 


An  Eighteenth  Century  Controversy  139 

people  may  naturally  be  surprised  at  seeing  a  thing  done  again 
which  Buchanan  had  done  so  well  and  it  might  almost  be  thought 
had  done  once  for  all. 

"Cur  ego  Grampigenae  relego  vestigia  Vatis 
Cur  Buohananaeae  fila  resumo  lyrae  ?  " 

he  asks,  and  he  replies  that  he  would  not  dream  of  comparing 
himself  with  Buchanan  who  has  shown  himself  as  great  a  poet 
as  Homer  or  as  Horace,  and  that  he  has  translated  the  Psalms 
in  quite  a  different  manner.  Buchanan  has  treated  David  as 
King  and  clothed  him  with  royal  robes,  Johnston  is  to  treat 
him  as  prophet,  and  to  set  him  forth  in  homelier  dress,  not  by  any 
means  comparing  himself  with  so  great  a  poet  but  hoping  that 
by  his  humbler  labours  the  fame  of  Buchanan  will  shine  all  the 
brighter.  He  had  also,  when  in  France,  defended  Buchanan 
against  the  challenge  of  a  would-be  rival,  a  Dr.  Eglisemius 
(Eaglesham?)  physician  to  the  King,  who  had  asked  the  Paris 
Medical  Faculty  to  decide  on  the  merits  of  his  Paraphrase  of 
Psalm  CIV.  as  compared  with  that  of  Buchanan.  On  this 
aspirant  to  poetic  fame  Johnston  pours  out  some  three  hundred 
lines  of  invective,  exhausting  the  resources  of  the  Latin  language 
in  calling  him  fool,  madman,  and  quack.  The  episode  shows 
clearly  how  high  Buchanan's  fame  stood  at  that  period.  When 
Johnston's  Psalms  were  produced,  however,  they  also  found 
warm  admirers  in  various  lands,  being  introduced  into  schools 
in  Holland  and  calling  forth  eloquent  tributes  in  Latin  verse 
from  scholars  both  at  home  and  abroad.  Johnston  also  came  to 
be  called  by  men  of  eminence  the  facile  princeps  poet  of  his 
day.  That  his  Psalms  were  placed  in  competition  with 
Buchanan's  as  we  have  seen  is  not  after  all  unnatural. 

Auditor  Benson  goes  more  thoroughly  to  work  than  any  other 
of  the  writers  in  question  in  his  disparagement  of  Buchanan's 
Psalms;  and  for  one  thing  undertakes  to  show  that  the  circum- 
stances in  which  they  were  produced  explain  their  inferiority. 
Buchanan's  own  account  of  the  matter  in  the  Vita  Sua  is  to  the 
effect  that  it  was  when  he  was  shut  up  by  the  Inquisition  for 
several  months  in  a  monastery  in  Spain,  at  that  time  mainly,  that 
he  translated  the  Psalms  into  various  measures.  He  was  thus 
shut  up  in  order  that  he  might  be  more  accurately  instructed 
by  the  monks  who,  he  says,  proved  neither  unkindly  nor  ill-dis- 
posed, though  they  were  utterly    ignorant    of    religious    truth. 


140  Buchanan's  Psalms 

Benson  amplifies  this  account  of  the  matter,  taking  from  Mac- 
Kenzie, — a  Scottish  historian  who  wrote  several  volumes 
called  Lives  of  Scottish  Writers, — the  statement  that  the 
translating  of  the  Psalms  was  a  penance  imposed  on  Buchanan 
in  the  monastery.  From  this  he  infers  that  the  translation  was 
done  in  great  haste,  as  Buchanan  was  very  anxious  to  get  out  of 
prison.  Ruddiman's  answer  to  this  is  complete.  He  says  that 
MacKenzie,  from  whatever  quarter  he  got  this  story  which, 
besides  being  unsupported,  is  on  the  face  of  it  unlikely  and  in- 
credible, was  apt  to  be  credulous.'  Buchanan  does  not  say  that 
he  finished  his  translation  of  the  Psalms  in  the  monastery,  but 
implies  the  contrary.  Such  men  as  the  monks  were  would  not 
likely  set  him  such  a  task ;  and  the  Psalms  were  not  published 
for  twelve  or  thirten  years  after  the  period  in  question.  Ruddi- 
man  might  have  argued  from  the  Psalms  themselves  that  they 
have  not  at  all  the  appearance  of  a  piece  of  taskwork  either 
unwillingly  or  hastily  performed.  He  does  not  do  this,  but 
spends  most  of  the  three  hundred  and  ninety  pages,  to  which 
his  vindication  extends,  in  minute  and  detailed  examination,  first 
of  Johnston's  Psalms  then  of  Buchanan's,  in  respect  of  metre, 
omissions,  superfluous  additions,  inappropriate  pagan  allusions, 
of  words  not  classical  or  otherwise  improperly  used,  of  the  pause 
and  its  improper  position  or  omission,  etc.,  etc.  Benson's 
fifty-three  pages  had  also  been  mainly  occupied  with 
detailed  criticism  of  such  matters,  and  the  reader  of 
this  assailant  of  Buchanan  soon  sees  that  his  strictures 
are  often  unfair  and  strained  and  such  as  a  little  effort  to  under- 
stand his  author  would  have  kept  him  from  making.  The  same 
is  true,  though  perhaps  in  a  somewhat  less  degree,  of  Ruddiman. 
It  was  necessary  perhaps  that  his  book  should  be  written ;  it  is 
by  no  means  necessary  or  in  any  way  to  be  recommended  that  it 
should  be  read  now,  except  perhaps  by  the  professed  historian 
of  modern  Latin  verse.  There  are  certainly  scholars  connected 
with  our  University  and  with  our  Buchanan  celebration  whose 
opinion  on  this  side  of  the  controversy  it  would  be  interesting  to 
hear.  Even  a  layman  in  Latin  prosody,  however,  may  read  the 
Psalms  of  Buchanan  and  of  Johnston  and  may  see  some  points  in 
them.  The  criticism  displayed  in  the  controversy,  even  by 
Ruddiman,  is  somewhat  narrow  and  technical ;  there  is  a  want 

'  Compare  Hume  Brown's  Oeorge  Bvclmnan,  Hmnaniitt  and  Reformer,  p. 
259—"  MaoKonzie  ie  always  to  be  taken  with  largo  reservations." 


An  Eighteenth  Century  Controversy  141 

in  it  of  broad  literary  appreciation,  the  whole  matter  remains, 
in  the  hands  of  both  combatants  alike,  one  for  grammarians. 

What  strikes  the  modern  reader  of  these  poems  is  that  the 
whole  idea  of  turning  the  Psalms  of  David  into  correct  Latin 
verse  was  a  somewhat  absurd  one,  so  that  the  debate  as  to  the 
mistakes  made  in  such  exercises  by  this  scholar  or  that,  and  as 
to  which  of  them  did  it  best,  is  lacking  altogether  in  substance 
and  reality.  The  thing  these  scholars  tried  to  do  may  be  pro- 
nounced impossible.  The  Psalms  are  made  up  originally  of  the 
most  concrete  and  direct  and  intense  religious  utterances.  There 
is  art  in  their  composition  no  doubt,  but  the  matter  outweighs 
the  form  in  them.  The  Psalmists  wrote  under  a  kind  of  compul- 
sion; the  new  religious  experiences  and  aspirations  with  which 
their  minds  and  the  minds  of  their  people  were  so  fully  charged 
had  to  be  put  in  metrical  form  in  order  to  secure  public 
national  utterance  of  them  in  the  temple  service.  It 
is  their  fulness  of  religious  meaning  that  gives  the 
original  songs  their  character ;  it  is  a  full  and  power- 
ful religious  faith  that  seeks  in  them  the  simplest  and 
straightest  outlet.  To  clothe  such  outpourings  in  the  ingenuities 
and  artificialities  of  classical  Latin  versification  is  really  to  alter 
their  character  completely  and  to  put  something  different  in 
their  place.  Beza's  Latin  Psalms  do  not  give  this  impression. 
They  are  done  straight  from  the  Hebrew  and  into  the  simplest 
Latin  verse.  Buchanan  on  the  other  hand  changes  the  Psalms 
into  great  and  powerful  Latin  poems.  No  one  who  reads  these 
poems  of  his  will  doubt  that  he  had  real  religious  feeling  and 
that  the  sentiment  of  the  Psalms  took  strong  hold  of  him.  But 
he  was  too  full  of  Horace  and  Virgil  and  other  ancient  poets  to 
use  any  form  but  theirs  for  the  expression  of  what  the  Psalms 
gave  him.  His  metres  produce  massive  effects,  often  not  present 
in  the  original  Psalms,  and  the  religious  spirit  of  the  Old  Testa- 
ment spirit  enters  into  a  splendid  amalgamation  with  the  pride 
and  vigour  of  Humanism. 

Johnston's  Psalms  are  more  of  a  translation  than  Buchanan's  ; 
his  work,  as  he  himself  said,  was  of  quite  a  different  character 
from  that  of  the  older  scholar.  His  metre  itself  involved  this, 
as  he  said  and  as  his  readers  have  remarked.  To  drop  every 
second  line  into  the  pentameter  keeps  the  verse  from  soaring. 
Johnston  follows  his  original  more  evenly  on  the  whole  and  adds 
less  of  his  own.     He  is  unequal  to  the  grander  passages,  best  in 


142  Buchanan's  Psalms 

the  contemplative  and  plaintive.  On  the  whole  one  would  judge 
that  Johnston's  Psalms  were  better  suited  for  beginners  in  the 
schools,  but  that  Buchanan's  would  do  far  more  for  boys  of  taste 
and  of  ambition. 

A  great  deal  more  light  could  no  doubt  be  shed  on  this  subject 
by  some  one  who  could  devote  more  time  to  it  than  I  have  been 
able  to  give.  One  leaves  it  with  a  strong  desire  that  the  Latin 
Psalms  of  Scotland  which  form  so  interesting  a  part  of  our 
national  inheritance  may  not  be  forgotten,  and  that  the  power 
to  appreciate  them  may  not  be  diminished  or  lost  in  the  country 
which  produced  them. 

A.  M. 


XVI. 

Buchanan's  Erotic  Verse. 

The  humanists  of  the  Renaissance,  following  the  example  of 
the  classic  poets  of  an  earlier  age,  showed  their  common  kinship 
to  humanity  by  writing  erotic  verse  on  similar  lines.  In  many 
instances,  however,  they  allowed  the  tricks  of  style  and  felicities 
of  expression  to  lead  them  into  licentiousness.  The  composition 
of  such  love  songs  was  part  of  the  discipline  of  the  scholars  of  the 
period,  who  endeavoured  to  show  off  their  facility  in  happy  turns 
of  expression  and  clever  play  upon  words.  There  was  more  of 
the  pride  of  skilful  versifying  than  real  sentiment  of  the  heart. 
Every  poet,  it  may  be  said,  falls  a  victim  to  Love,  real  or 
imaginary,  and  lays  the  best  offering  of  his  wit  on  the  altar  of 
Eros. 

In  the  time  of  Buchanan,  when  Latin  was  the  language  of 
culture  and  scholarship,  almost  every  scholar  who  had  any 
pretensions  to  be  considered  a  poet  imitated  the  amatory  verse 
of  such  writers  of  antiquity  as  Ovid,  Horace,  Catullus  or 
Tibullus.  A  previous  century  saw  the  Italian  poets  exaggerat- 
ing this  kind  of  composition,  and  almost  exhausting  the  entire 
vocabulary  of  word  and  phrase  in  their  desire  to  surpass  one 
another  in  absurdity,  and  often  in  obscenity.  To  write  such 
verses  was  the  fashion  of  the  time,  and  we  are  not  surprised  to 
find  Buchanan  entering  the  lists,  while  he  was  resident  in 
Portugal,  and  inditing  such  tit-bits  of  Latin  verse  as  the  Ad 
Neaeram,  In  Leonoram,  In  Gelliam,  and  Ad  Briandum  Vallium, 
Senatorem  Burdegalensem,  pro  Lena  Apologia.  Some  of  these 
literary  intrusions  into  the  region  of  feminine  coquetry  have 
tended  to  create  misgivings  in  the  minds  of  some  of  his 
friendly  critics,  and  gave  occasion  to  detractors  to  exhibit  the 
venom  of  their  spleen.  But  the  student  of  Buchanan  who 
understands  the  circumstances  of  his  time  and  the  occasions  for 
the  penning  of  such  erotic  verse,  need  not  disturb  himself.  The 
laxity  of  expression,  which  such  poets  allowed  themselves  in 
verses  dealing  with  that  evasive  and  illusive  subject,  woman,  does 
not  imply  that  the  writers  were  themselves  lax  in  their  morals. 


144  Buchanan's  Erotic  Verse 

There  is  the  case  of  Beza,  a  great  offender  in  this  respect,  who 
solemnly  assures  us  that  though  his  Muse  was  lax  his  life  was 
chaste.'  On  the  other  hand,  Muret  was  so  lax  in  morals  that 
the  grossness  of  his  verse  forms  a  practical  commentary  upon  the 
manner  of  his  life.  Buchanan  like  Beza,  was  a  man  of  pure  life, 
and  his  verse  is  much  less  objectionable.  The  elegy  (Ehgiarum 
Liber  III.)  Ad  Briandum  Vallium,  etc.,  has  puzzled  many  of 
Buchanan's  biographers,  but  its  title  reveals  its  purport.  It  is 
a  jeu  d'esprit,  written  in  the  ironic  vein  at  the  time  and  in  the 
country  of  Rabelais,  when  such  poetical  effusions  were  the  pas- 
time of  the  humanists.  An  amount  of  poetical  licence  was 
assumed  at  this  period  which  would  not  be  permitted  now.  The 
Councillor  Briand  de  Vallee,  to  whom  this  remarkable  elegy  is 
addressed,  was  a  member  of  the  Parliament  of  Bordeaux,  and 
founded  a  monthly  lectureship  on  the  Epistles  of  St.  Paul.  He 
was  considered  by  Rabelais  one  of  his  best  friends,  and  is  char- 
acterised by  him  as  the  "  tant  bon,  tant  vertueux,  tant  docte,  et 
equitable  president  Briand  de  Vallee."^ 

When  a  selection  of  such  pieces  as  the  Elegiae,  Silvae,  etc., 
was  published,  in  1567,  Buchanan  says  in  an  introductory 
epistle  to  his  friend  Peter  Daniel  ''  "  For  my  own  part, 
I  was  not  extremely  solicitous  to  recall  them  from  perdition ; 
for  the  subjects  are  generally  of  a  trivial  nature ;  and 
such  as  at  this  period  of  life  are  at  once  calculated 
to  inspire  me  with  disgust  and  shame.  But  as  Pierre 
Montaure*     and    some    other     friends,     to     whom     I     neither 

'  The  Latin  Poets  of  the  classical  age  made  the  same  excuse. 
Nam  caatum  ease  decet  pium  poetam 
Ipsum  ;  versiculos  nihil  neoesse  est.  — Catullus. 
Crede  mihi ;  mores  distant  a  carmine  nostro  : 
Vita  vereounda  est,  Musa  jooosa  rnihi. — Ouid. 
Innocuos  censura  potest  permittere  lusus  : 
Lasciva  est  nobis  pagina,  vita  proba. — Martiai. 
^  Rabelais,  Liv.  i v. ,  Chap,  xxxvii. 

'  Peter  Daniel,  a  native  of  St.  Benoist  sur  Loire,  was  an  advocate  living 
principally  in  Orleans.  He  held  the  office  of  bailli  of  the  Abbey  of  Fleuri. 
Scioppius  characterises  him  as  a  storehouse  of  every  species  of  antiquities. 
Soaliger  and  Turnebus  acknowledge  thomaelves  indebted  to  him  for  the 
communication  of  his  manuscript  treasures.  He  died  in  1603.  Irving's 
Memoirs  of  Oeorge  Buchanan,  p.  213. 

^Pierre  Montaur6  was  Master  of  Requests,  a  Latin  poet  of  some  dis- 
tinction, and  skilled  in  mathematical  soionoo.  Ho  died  at  Sanoerre  aur  Loire, 
19th  August  1570. 


Buchanan's  Erotic  Verse  145 

can  nor  ought  to  refuse  any  request,  demanded  them  with  such 
earnestness,  I  have  employed  some  of  my  leisure  hours  in  collect- 
ing a  portion,  and  placing  it  in  a  state  of  arrangement.  With 
this  specimen,  which  consists  of  one  book  of  Elegies,  another  of 
Miscellanies,  and  a  third  of  hendecasyllables,  I  in  the  meantime 
present  you.  When  it  shall  suit  your  convenience,  I  beg  you 
will  communicate  them  to  Mantaure,  Des  Mesmes,^  and  other 
philological  friends,  without  whose  advice  I  trust  you  will  not 
adopt  any  measure  relative  to  their  publication.  In  a  short 
time,  I  propose  sending  a  book  of  iambics,  another  of  epigrams, 
another  of  odes,  and  perhaps  some  other  pieces  of  a  similar 
denomination :  all  these  I  wish  to  be  at  the  disposal  of  my 
friends,  as  I  have  finally  determined  to  rely  more  on  their  judg- 
ment than  on  my  own." 

Buchanan  felt  some  doubt  about  publishing  such  effusions, 
but  relied  more  upon  the  judgment  of  his  literary  friends  than 
upon  his  own.  It  would  have  deprived  the  modern  critic  of  a 
glimpse  into  the  large  heart  and  versatile  mind  of  such  a  poet 
had  he  not  left  these  specimens  of  his  nimble  wit  and  ready  pen. 
He  was  what  the  Scots  call  a  '  buirdly  '  man — too  large  for  the 
microscopical  vision  of  narrow-minded  men,  who  fail  to  see  the 
true  man  in  their  eagerness  to  detect  the  flaws  in  his  character. 
The  late  Dr.  Robert  Wallace  takes  a  broader  view.^  "  One 
biographer,  a  very  competent  authority  on  this  period  of  Scottish 
history,  says,  somewhat  severely,  that  these  pieces  ought  not  to 
have  been  written  by  the  man  who  wrote  Franciscanus — a  power- 
ful satire  on  the  vices  and  hypocrisy  of  the  monks.  I  must  say 
that,  with  every  deference  to  a  critic  highly  worthy  of  respect,  I 
am  not  able  to  see  it.  The  Franciscanus  was  essentially  an 
exposure  of  dishonesty,  not  so  much  of  the  vices  practised  under 
the  cowl,  as  of  the  shameful  trickery  of  using  the  cowl  to  cloak 
them.  As  far  as  honesty  and  consistency  go,  there  is  no  reason 
why  an  honest  and  consistent  man  should  not  have  written  every 
word  of  these  '  Lena  '  sketches.  Even  from  an  artistic  point  of 
view  they  will  stand  inspection.  The  subject,  of  course,  is  a 
revolting  one,  and  so  is  Dame  Quickly — but  would  any  man  of 
average    robustness    of    mind    wish    Dame    Quickly    unwritten  ? 

1  Henry  dea  Mesmes,  Master  of  Requests,  derived  his  lineage  from  the 
native  country  of  Buchanan,  and  was  a  great  encourager  of  learning.  His 
opinion  in  literary  matters  was  deferred  to  by  many.     He  died  in  August  1596. 

2  George  Buchanan,  p.  106. 
L 


146  Buchanan's  Erotic  Verse 

Many  people  seem  to  forget  that  while  the  real  itself  may  be 
unpleasant,  the  artistic  image  of  the  real  may  be  a  delight.  We 
should  shrink  from  Caliban  in  the  flesh,  but  Shakespeare  throws 
a  charm  over  him ;  Pandemonium  is  not,  I  believe,  a  sweet  scene, 
but  Milton's  account  of  it  is  sublime ;  FalstafE  was  disreputable, 
but  he  makes  an  admirable  stage  figure ;  a  corpse  is  an  unlovely 
object,  but  Rembrandt's  '  Dissectors  '  has  a  fascination."  Re- 
ferring to  Buchanan's  Leonoras,  Dr.  Wallace  goes  on  to  say  that 
"  in  point  of  graphic  power"  they  "  are  second  only  to  the 
Jolly  Beggars,  while  their  savage  and  even  hideous  realism,  con- 
trasting with  the  elegance  of  the  Latin  line,  produce  a  piquant 
effect  from  the  mere  point  of  view  of  art.  But  I  demur  to  any 
suggestion  that  these  or  any  of  Buchanan's  so-called  '  amorous ' 
poetry  are  corrupting  or  intended  to  be,  or  that  they  exhibit  any 
gloating  over  the  degrading  or  the  degraded  on  the  part  of  the 
writer.  From  references  in  them  I  believe  they  were  satires 
written  for  the  warning  of  '  College '  youth,  and  resembled 
certain  passages  in  the  Book  of  Proverbs  and  elsewhere  in  the 
Bible,  where  certain  counsels,  highly  necessary  and  practical,  are 
conveyed  in  language  not  deficient  either  in  directness  nor  detail. 
They  could  not  possibly  scandalise  or  tempt  any  one,  being 
written  in  Latin.  Mr.  Podsnap  and  the  '  young  person  '  would 
pass  equally  scathless,  for  they  could  not  read  them.  Only  men 
who  could  construe  and  scan  Horace  could  understand  them,  and 
these  might  be  trusted  to  see  their  true  drift." 

This  view  is,  I  think,  a  fair  and  reasonable  position  to  take 
up.  With  a  few  exceptions  we  find  the  love  verses  of  Buchanan 
in  two  sets,  addressed  to  Leonora  and  Neaera.  The  series  to 
Leonora  appear  to  be  modelled  on  Horace's  Ode  (IV.  13.)  to 
Lyce — Audivere,  Lyce,  di  mea  rota —  and  the  twenty  poems 
contain  every  imaginable  kind  of  abuse.  Leonora  does  not  seem 
to  have  been  a  real  person,  but  merely  a  fictitious  character 
around  whom  the  poet  allows  his  fancy  to  play.  Those  addressed 
to  Neaera'  are  much  happier  in  theme  and  expression,  showing 

'  Neaera   was   the   poetical    mistress   of   TibuUus,    Marullus,    Secundus, 
Bonefoniua,  and  many  other  poets  beaidua.     Hoiioo  the  allusion  of  Milton— 
Were  it  not  better  done  as  others  use. 
To  sport  with  Amaryllis  in  the  shade, 
Or  with  the  tangles  of  Neaera's  hair? 

The  quostion  wliioh  Milton  a.sUs  is  whether  it  wore  not  better  to  apply  himself 
to  the  ooniposition  of  amatory  pastorals  or  of  love  elegies. 


Buchanan's  Erotic  Verse  147 

the  poet's  aptitude  for  piquant  turns  of  thought  and  delicate 
phrasing.  The  beauty  and  the  charm  of  Neaera  afford  the 
theme  of  the  epigrams,  which  contain  little  or  no  passion,  but 
rather  simulated  emotion.  The  best  known  of  this  series  is  the 
thirty-first.  Be  Neaera :  — 

Ilia  mihi  semper  praesenti  dura  Neaera, 

Me,  quoties  abaum,  semper  abesee  dolet : 

Non  desiderio  nostri,  non  moeret  amore, 
Sed  se  non  nostro  posse  dolore  frui, 

which  may  be  freely  rendered  :  — 

Neaera  is  cold  whene'er  I  appear, 

But  sighs  at  my  absence  again. 
Not  that  she  loves  me,  and  so  sheds  a  tear, 

But  desires  to  witness  my  pain. 

The  translation  of  James  Hannay  runs  thus :  — 

Neaera  is  harsh  at  our  every  greeting. 

Whene'er  I  am  absent  she  wants  me  again  ; 

'Tis  not  that  she  loves  me  or  cares  for  our  meeting, 
She  misses  the  pleasure  of  seeing  my  pain. 

He  adds  that  '  Menage  used  to  say  that  he  would  have  given  his 
best  benefice  to  have  written  the  lines — and  Menage  held  some 
fat  ones.'  Menage,  who  was  an  excellent  philologer  himself, 
has  given  a  rendering  of  these  verses  in  one  of  his  Italian 
Madrigals,  beginning, 

Chi  creduto  I'avrebbe, 
L'empia,  la  cruda  lole 
Del  mio  partir  si  duole. 

These  epigrams  of  Buchanan  are  terse  in  diction,  pungent  in 
thought,  flexible  and  pointed.  They  were  greeted  with  the  well 
deserved  admiration  of  competent  critics,  and  many  have 
imitated  them.  In  his  verses  In  Gelliam,  he  indulges  in  playful 
satires  upon  those  ladies  who  painted  or  adorned  themselves  by 
wearing  brass  rings  and  glass  gems.  These  could  not  possibly  do 
anything  else  than  amuse  the  reader :  there  is  no  suggestion  of 
pruriency  in  any  of  them. 

For  the  higher  type  of  womanhood  Buchanan  had  nothing  but 
praise  and  appreciation,  as  may  be  seen  from  his  verses  Ad 
Mildredam  Gulielmi  Gaecilii  uxorem,  matronam  virtute  et  erudi- 
tione  praestantem,  or  the  Ad  Camillam  Morelliam.  The  latter 
runs : — 


148  Buchanan's  Erotic  Verse 

Camilla,  multo  me  mihi  carior, 
Aut  al  quid  ipso  est  me  mihi  oarius, 
Camilla,  doctorum  parentum 
Et  patriae  deous  et  voluptaa  : 

Ni  Gratiae  te  plus  oculis  ament, 
Ni  te  Camoenae  plus  ooulla  ament, 
Neo  Gratias  gratas,  neo  ipsas 
Esse  rear  lepidas  Camoenas  : 
Quae  virgo  nondum  nubilis,  artibus 
Doctis  Minervam,  peotine  ApoUinem, 
Cantu  Camoenas,  et  lepore 

Vel  superes  Charites,  vel  aeqaes. 

Hos  ferre  fruotus,  Utenhovi,  decet 
Laurum,  vireto  quae  teneram  comam 
Nutrivit,  et  ramos  refudit 
Castalio  saturata  rore. 

The  tenderness  of  the  poet's  heart  is  revealed  in  these  lines,  and 
he  displays  the  gracefulness  with  which  he  could  touch  such 
themes.  The  outlook  of  Buchanan  was  wide,  and  he  felt  that 
the  poet's  dominion  was  bound  only  by  man's  environment.  All 
things  interested  him,  and  in  his  versatility  we  see  the  deep 
veneration  which  he  felt  when  thus  standing  in  presence  of  the 
mystery  of  God's  marvellous  universe. 

There  is  an  interesting  reference  to  his  erotic  verse  in  the  first 
poem  of  the  lamhon  Liber,  addressed  to  William  Haddon,  one 
of  the  Masters  of  the  Court  of  Requests  to  Queen  Elizabeth,  who 
was  also  a  noted  Latinist.     It  begins:  — 

Frustra  seneotam,  Haddone,  provocas  meam 

Laeta  ad  juventae  munia, 
Musaaque  longo  desides  silentio 

Arenam  in  antiquam  vooaa. 

'  These  lines,  moreover,  deserve  to  be  quoted,"  says  Dr.  Hume 
Brown,'  "  as  they  seem  to  place  beyond  doubt  that  Leonora  and 
Neaera  were  mere  names  on  which  he  exercised  his  fancy. 
Haddon,  it  appears,  had  called  on  his  friend  for  a  poem,  such  as 
he  had  once  known  so  well  how  to  turn.  But,  Buchanan,  now 
on  the  verge  of  his  sixtieth  year,  thus  replies :  "  In  vain  you 
challenge  an  old  man  to  the  sallies  of  his  youth.  Even  in  the 
years  when  such  trifling  is  more  seemly,  rarely  did  the  Muse 
visit  me,  born  as  I  was  in  mountainous  Britain,  in  a  rude  age, 
among  a  rude  people.  Now  when  declining  age  has  left  me  a 
'  George  Buchanan,  Humaninl  and  Ref miner,  p.  140. 


Buchanan's  Erotic  Verse  149 

few  white  hairs,  when  I  have  all  but  told  the  tale  of  three  score 
years,  and  all  my  spirits  droop,  Phoebus  turns  me  a  deaf  ear,  and 
the  Muses  harken  not  to  my  call.  It  yields  me  no  joy  now  to 
sing  how  the  golden  hair  of  Phyllis  is  dearer  to  me  than  the  locks 
of  Bacchus,  or  to  indite  stinging  iambics  on  Neaera's  heartless 
want  of  faith.'  "  The  lines,  the  translation  of  which  Dr.  Hume 
Brown  has  thus  given  in  italics,  are  these :  -  - 

Neo  Phyllidis  me  nunc  juvat  flavam  coraam 

Praeferre  Bacohi  crinibus, 
Neo  in  Neaerae  perfidam  superbiam 

Saevos  iambos  stringere, 

and  may  be  freely  rendered  :  — 

It  is  not  now  a  joy  to  me 

To  hold  that  Phyllis'  golden  hair 
Is  dearer  than  the  looks  I  see 

Around  the  head  of  Bacchus  there  ; 
Nor  do  I  care  the  perfidy 

Of  false  Neaera  to  indite 

In  harsh  iambics  which  I  write. 

The  exercises  of  a  more  youthful  period  had  now  become 
distasteful  to  the  aging  humanist,  and  while  he  was  as  able 
as  ever  to  display  his  deftness  of  touch  in  versification,  he 
had  not  the  heart  to  simulate  the  passions  he  had  ceased  to 
feel.  As  we  have  seen  the  examples  of  his  erotic  verse  are 
not  unworthy  of  the  reputation  of  one  who  was  the  foremost 
Latinist  of  his  time,  and  whose  memory  has  been  justly 
honoured  at  the  recent  celebrations,  held  in  the  University 
which  he  adorned. 

R.  M.  F. 


XVII. 

Science  and  Humanism:  Buchanan's  "De  Sphaera." 

An  inquiry  into  the  condition  of  the  European  mind  at  the 
epoch  of  Buchanan  would  be  a  stupendous  task.  Even  a 
general  statement  of  the  more  salient  features  of  the  knowledge 
and  modes  of  thought  of  the  men  of  the  time,  of  what  interested 
them  and  attracted  them,  of  what  general  explanation  of  the 
universe  satisfied  them,  would  carry  us  too  far.  Moreover,  it  is 
apt  to  be  forgotten  that  the  Renaissance  was  a  manifold 
awakening,  and  Humanism  was  only  one  of  its  products  and 
not  the  most  important  and  enduring. 

What  we  in  these  days  call  science,  the  life-work  of  such  men 
as  Darwin,  or  Lord  Kelvin,  was  hardly  possible  for  anyone. 
To  the  Humanist  it  offered  no  reward  and  presented  no  interest. 
Besides,  it  took  a  long  time  for  the  human  mind  to  recover 
from  the  effects  of  a  thousand  years  of  slavery  to  ecclesiastical 
domination.  While  the  Arabs  and  the  Jews  were  free  to  pursue 
investigations  in  Anatomy,  Medicine,  Chemistry,  Astronomy, 
the  men  of  Christendom  were  in  absolute  bondage.  The 
religious  creed  of  the  Arab  and  the  Jew  was  so  short  and  so 
simple  that  no  elaborate  system  of  casuistry,  no  cumbrous 
hierarchy  and  ceremonial,  no  boundless  wilderness  of  legends 
about  shrines  and  saints  and  relics  were  needed  to  support  it. 
The  ecclesiastical  system  of  Christendom  had  become  such  that 
it  could  not  exist  if  there  were  free  inquiry  such  as  the  Arabs 
carried  on.  Doctors,  for  example,  could  hardly  be  tolerated, 
for  they  would  be  rivals  to  the  Confessional,  and  they  would, 
moreover,  prevent  the  sick  from  resorting  to  shrines  and 
relics  for  cure,  and  would  thus  cut  off  a  very  profitable 
form  of  tribute  from  the  clergy.  Mankind,  besides,  had  grown 
so  much  accustomed  to  illogical  thinking  that  a  scientific 
mode  of  thought  could  hardly  be  looked  for  till  many  years  had 
come  and  gone.  Galileo  was  barely  allowed  to  live  by  the 
occlesiasticism  of  the  seventeenth  century :    it  sent  Bruno  to  the 


Buchanan's  "De  Sphaera"  151 

stake  in  1600.  Newton,  Dr.  Harvey,  Napier  of  Merchiston, 
Torricelli,  Kepler,  Leibnitz,  Otto  von  Guericke  were  not  coeval 
with  the  high  tide  of  Humanism ;  they  appeared  after  it  had 
subsided.  They  were  products  of  the  seventeenth  century,  not 
the  sixteenth. 

All  science  must  be  founded  upon  careful  sifting  of 
evidences.  No  science  can  exist  in  a  community  in  which  the 
inability  to  appreciate  the  cogency  or  irrelevance  of  evidence  is 
a  prevalent  feature.  This  inability,  so  extraordinary  when 
viewed  along  with  the  elaborate  and  acute  formal  reasoning  of 
the  schoolmen,  was  the  characteristic  of  European  thought  for 
centuries.  The  victory  of  Ivanhoe  in  the  lists  at  Ashby  was 
accepted  as  quite  a  satisfactory  proof  that  Rebecca  was 
innocent.  An  Arab  writer  mocks  at  this  illogical  thinking  and 
says  that  if  a  man  wished  to  prove  that  three  is  greater  than 
ten  he  would  do  so  by  changing  a  stick  into  a  serpent.  Beyond 
all  this,  those  illuminati  to  whom  the  glories  of  the  Greek  and 
Roman  classics  had  revealed  themselves  had  all  the  hunger  of 
their  souls  satisfied.  They  felt  no  call  to  inquire  into  the  secrets 
of  nature  further  than  had  been  done  by  Aristotle,  Pythagoras, 
Hippocrates  and  Ptolemy.  They  would  have  held  it  to  be 
sacrilegious  to  doubt  the  methods  of  the  ancients  or  the  accuracy 
and  completeness  of  their  results.  For  it  was  not  only  the 
artistic  beauty  of  the  compositions  in  which  the  ancient  thought 
was  revealed  to  them  that  aroused  Humanistic  admiration  and 
enthusiasm ;  Greek  and  Roman  thought  itself  was  so  free  from 
the  ecclesiastical  and  theological  fetters  in  which  the  European 
mind  for  centuries  had  been  bound,  that  it  was  unhesitatingly 
accepted  as  the  last  word.  It  was  so  free,  so  well  ordered,  so 
lofty  and  so  sane,  compared  with  the  trivialities  and  narrowness 
of  the  scholastic  lore  of  Western  Europe.  Hence  the 
Humanists  were  in  every  way  satisfied  to  revel  in  the  delights 
of  literature,  without  a  care  for  any  key  to  the  mysteries  of 
nature. 

The  Renaissance  was  a  resurrection  of  the  open  mind,  the 
curiosity  natural  to  the  human  intellect ;  but  in  that  general 
awakening  that  was  extending  the  bounds  of  human  knowledge 
in  every  direction,  that  gave  us  Columbus,  Bacon  and  Newton, 
the  Humanists  took  only  a  small  share.  Their  chosen  field  was 
girt  and  circumscribed  by  the  codices  that  could  be  found  by 
devoted    searchers,    and    by    the    volumes    issued    with    such 


152  Science  and  Humanism  : 

marvellous  rapidity  by  the  presses  of  Aldo  or  of  Estienne. 
And  although  the  best  of  them  pleaded  that  in  the  training  of 
youth,  which  was  part  at  least  of  the  life  work  of  Buchanan, 
the  aim  should  be  ratio  as  well  as  oratio,  there  were  few  true 
Humanists  who  would  not  prefer  the  latter  to  the  former,  and 
forgive  the  badness  of  the  reasoning  or  the  smallness  of  the 
topic  if  the  style  were  good  and,  above  all  things,  accurate. 
They  were  few  indeed  who,  like  Buchanan,  could  at  once 
inform,  convince,  and  charm. 

The  ideal  man  was  now  a  man  of  books.  The  "  light  of 
things"  had  hardly  dawned.  In  the  previous  age  the  ideal 
man  had  been  either  the  man  of  war  or  the  holy  monk.  But 
now  the  sword  and  the  pilgrim's  staff  had  both  been  obscured 
by  the  printed  page.  Pere  Bourbon  would  rather  be  author  of 
Buchanan's  Psalms  than  Archbishop  of  Paris.  Pomponius 
Laetus,  who  taught  Latin  literature  in  Rome  for  many  years, 
and  who  both  lived  the  life  of  a  pagan  Roman  and  induced 
many  others  to  follow  his  example,  was  not  excommunicated, 
but  was  accorded,  at  his  death,  a  great  funeral  which  was 
attended  by  forty  bishops.  Beautifully  symbolical  of  the 
change  is  the  bronze  monumental  figure  of  Alberto  Pio  in  the 
Louvre.  The  princely  Italian  scholar  is  represented  in  armour, 
but  his  sword  is  sheathed  and  in  his  hand  he  holds  an  open 
book. 

It  is  this  worship  of  books,  this  devotion  to  the  ancients, 
the  cultivation  of  their  style  and  the  adoption  of  their  thought, 
that  set  the  Humanists  apart.  We  can  thus  understand  how 
it  was  that  Buchanan,  one  of  the  greatest  of  his  class,  lays 
himself  open  to  the  charge  of  imitation,  of  having  in  the 
selection  of  his  themes  and  the  manner  of  treating  them 
confined  himself  to  tracts  already  travelled  by  the  classic  writers. 

It  has  just  been  said  that  scientific  research,  as  we  know  it, 
was  impossible  in  these  days.  Not  only  was  there  no  scientific 
mind,  but  the  ground  was  so  covered  with  the  weeds  of 
superstition  and  credulity  that  the  best  of  minds  had  to  be 
cleared  of  rank  thickets  of  error  and  superstition  before  any 
cultivation  could  be  attempted.  Gargantua  had  to  be  "  purged 
canonically  with  Anticyrian  hellebore."  But  even  Rabelais, 
one  of  the  best  products  of  the  Renaissance,  and  himself  follow- 
ing what  should  be  a  scientific  profession,  makes  Ponocrates 
teach  his  pupil  the  fart-lore  of  "  wine  and  water,  of  salt,  of 


Buchanan's  "  De  Sphaera"       153 

fleshes,  fishes,  fruits,"  etc.,  not  by  the  modern  method  of 
observation,  but  by  "  learning  in  a  little  time  all  the  passages 
competent  for  this  that  were  to  be  found  in  Pliny,  Athenseus, 
Dioscorides,  Julius  Pollux,  Galen,  Porphyrins,  Oppian, 
Polybius,  Heliodorus,  Aristotle,  ^lian,  and  others."  It  is  true 
that  there  are  better  things  than  this  in  the  training  of 
Gargantua,  but  it  shows  how  classical  lore  was  trusted  and 
revered  and  how  unfamiliar  the  scientific  spirit  was  to  the  men 
of  the  Renaissance. 

Curiosities  of  the  current  natural  history  are  to  be  found 
everywhere,  and  appalling  credulity  and  ignorance  even  among 
the  cultured.  The  reader  is  advised  to  read  Bishop  Leslie's 
account  of  Scotland  in  his  History.  His  account  of  the 
"clack-goose"  is  typical.  He  not  only  quotes  Hector  Boece 
as  having  seen  these  fabulous  creatures,  but  declares  that  he 
himself  saw  them  at  Leith  in  1562,  "  mony  thousands  of  sik 
lytle  foulis  stiking  to  the  ship,  thrie  fingres  lang,  of  a 
meruellous  perfyte  and  weil  schapen  forme,  except  that  they 
war  litle,  lyueles,  and  fethirles."  Other  eyes  too,  were 
evidently  blinking  owl-like  in  the  dawn  on  things  around : 
minds  like  those  of  children  were  wondering ;  for  he  goes  on 
to  tell  how  in  the  "  zeir  of  God  1566,"  there  was  presented  to 
"  our  noble  Maistres,  Quene  Marie  of  Scotis,"  who  was  then  at 
Stirling,  "  a  branche  of  a  certane  trie  fra  whilke  mony  fructes, 
as  thay  had  bene,  hang  doune,  litle  indeid,  bot  innumerable 
mussilis,  in  quhilkes  war  fund  not  iishe  (a  meruel)  bot  foulis." 
And  even  when  the  simple  Bishop  was  writing  this  in  Rome  he 
met  a  Dr.  Allan,  doctor  of  Theology  in  England,  who  told  him 
he  had  often  seen  "  thir  lytle  foulis  upon  the  keilis  of  aide 
schipis  in  the  west  of  Ingland."  The  interesting  thing  about 
all  this  is  that  apparently  Queen  Mary  must  have  given  reason 
for  believing  that  she  was  interested  in  natural  history :  we 
know  on  the  other  hand  that  she  had  shortly  before  been 
reading  Livy  with  Buchanan.  We  feel  when  we  read  this 
incident  as  if  we  were  assisting  at  the  small  beginnings  of  a 
Royal  Society.  Was  Buchanan  present  when  this  "  branche  of 
a  certane  trie  "  was  brought  to  Mary  or  had  he  gone  to  Paris 
to  see  to  the  printing  of  the  Psalms  with  the  famous  dedication 
to  the  Queen  ?  Possibly  had  he  been  present  he  would  not  have 
doubted,  any  more  than  did  Hector  Boece  or  Bishop  Leslie  or 
"  Doctour  Allan  of  Ingland,"  that  the  "mony  fructes" 
contained  "  foulis." 


154  Science  and  Humanism: 

If  there  was  any  scientific  progress  at  all  between  the 
extinction  of  the  ancient  culture  and  the  Renaissance,  it  was  in 
Chemistry,  Medicine,  and  Astronomy,  and  these  matters  were 
in  the  hands  of  laymen.  The  Arabs  had  taken  the  torch  that 
was  flickering  in  the  loosening  grasp  of  the  Eastern  scholars  and 
had  trimmed  and  fed  the  flame  and  carried  it  into  Spain. 
Thence  their  light  shone  upon  the  men  of  Western  Europe  for 
centuries.  These  branches  of  knowledge  were  cultivated  by  the 
Arabs  above  all  others.  The  marvellous  pitch  to  which 
scientific  and  philosophic  culture  was  carried  by  the  Arabs 
contrasts  painfully  with  the  darkness  and  superstition  prevail- 
ing in  Christendom.  When  science  began  to  be  cultivated  in 
Western  Europe,  the  work  had  only  to  be  begun  where  the 
Arab  scholars  had  left  it.  We  are  about  to  see  how  Buchanan 
regarded  Astronomy.  One  illustration  of  the  state  of  Medical 
Science  in  the  16th  century  must  be  sufficient.  In  January 
1570  the  Regent  Moray  was  shot  at  Linlithgow  by  a  Hamilton, 
and  all  the  Hamiltons  fell  into  public  disfavour.  In  the 
following  month  a  rhyming  broadside  was  issued,  not  wanting 
in  poetical  and  musical  feeling,  calling  on  all  birds  and  flowers 
to  mourn  the  fallen  prince  and  on  the  ' '  Lordis  "  to  revenge  the 
deed,  pointing  out  how  dangerous  the  Hamiltons  were, 
"  forquhy  Cardanus  the  Feind  pat  in  the  priest."  The  priest 
into  whom  Cardanus,  the  famous  Jerome  Cardan,  put  a  fiend 
was  the  notorious  Archbishop  Hamilton  of  St.  Andrews,  whose 
character  must  have  been  very  black  indeed  if  it  were  as  black 
as  Buchanan  has  painted  it.  In  1552  he  had  despaired  of 
being  cured  by  the  Scottish  doctors  of  a  disease  given  out  as 
asthma.  Cardan,  only  known  to  modern  students  as  the  author 
of  a  method  of  solving  cubic  equations,  called  Cardan's  rule,  had 
a  great  repute  as  a  physician  and  was  then  professor  of 
Mathematics  at  Milan.  He  was  sent  for  and  stayed  from  June 
to  September  in  Scotland.  He  undertook  the  cure  of  the 
Archbishop  and  succeeded,  being  very  handsomely  paid  for  his 
treatment.  The  cure  is  described  by  Randolph  in  a  letter  to 
Cecil,  now  in  the  State  Paper  Office,  and  bears  out  the  state- 
ment quoted  above  from  the  poetical  broadside  of  Feb.  1570, 
about  seventeen  years  afterwards.  Briefly  told  the  cure 
consisted  of  "  divers  foreign  inventions,"  which  puts  it  very 
mildly.  He  hung  him  up  by  the  heels  "certain  hours  in  the 
day";    he  fed  him  "  many  days  on  young  whelps."     To  crown 


Buchanan's  "  De  Sphaera"       155 

all  he  "  rounded  "  for  the  space  of  six  days  "  certain  unknown 
words  in  his  ears."  "  It  is  said,"  says  Randolph,  "  that  at  that 
time" — viz.,  these  six  days — "  he  did  put  a  devil  within  him" 
and  "  that  this  devil  was  given  him  on  credit  but  for  nine 
years,"  and  so  on.  Could  any  more  striking  picture  be  drawn 
of  the  state  of  science  than  this  of  His  Grace  the  Archbishop  of 
St.  Andrews  hanging  by  the  heels  while  he  of  the  cubic 
equations  ' '  rounded  "  cabalistic  words  in  his  ears  ?  And  yet 
Cardan  was  in  the  front  rank  of  physicians:  he  was  besides  a 
first-rate  mathematician,  which  is  supposed  to  cure  one  of 
credulity.  Moreover,  not  only  were  the  quack  and  his  victim  so 
prominent  men,  but  Randolph,  who  tells  the  story  and 
obviously  believes  it  all,  was  a  cultured  man  of  much  shrewdness, 
who  knew  men  and  cities,  and  Cecil,  to  whom  he  tells  it,  had 
one  of  the  best  heads  in  England. 

The  only  work  of  Buchanan's  that  has  any  scientific 
character  is  his  great  poem.  Be  Sphaera,  which  he  began  to 
write  about  1555,  but  never  finished.  As  a  Humanist  he  had 
entered  upon  almost  every  field  cultivated  by  his  prototypes, 
the  Greek  and  Roman  ancients,  and  had  proved  himself  a 
master  in  them  all.  There  remained  for  him  to  essay  a  great 
and  enduring  monument  of  genius  in  the  form  of  a  poem  on 
the  loftiest  of  themes.  He  had  matched  himself  with  the 
epigrammatists,  the  lyrists,  the  dramatists,  the  elegiac  writers, 
the  satirists,  the  historians,  and  by  universal  consent  had  proved 
himself  their  equal.  But  he  had  written  nothing  epic  like 
the  Mneid,  nothing  like  the  Georgia,  nothing  loftily  didactic 
and  philosophic  like  the  Be  Rervm  Natura.  The  subject  of  the 
constitution  of  the  universe  presented  itself  to  him  as  one  in 
which  great  thoughts  like  those  of  Lucretius  would  be  called 
forth,  while  in  the  abundant  digressions  into  ancient  myth  that 
such  a  subject  would  allow  there  would  be  welcome  opportunities 
of  rivalling  the  fancy  and  the  music  of  Virgil. 

The  De  Sphaera  is  indeed  a  very  great  and  remarkable  poem. 
As  a  contribution  to  astronomical  or  cosmographic  thought  it  is 
now  of  little  value,  but  as  a  sustained  proof  of  poetic  genius, 
of  classical  learning,  of  astonishing  fluency  and  ease  in  the  use 
of  Latin  and  all  the  lore  of  the  ancients,  it  must  take  a  very 
high  place.  Most  readers  must  inevitably  come  to  the  con- 
clusion that  the  digressions  are  the  best  of  the  poem  as  poetry, 
and   have   most   of   that   characteristic   charm   that   readers   of 


156  Science  and  Humanism : 

Buchanan  soon  come  to  associate  with  his  verse,  a  charm  which 
has  lifted  Buchanan  out  of  the  mass  of  merely  imitative  writers. 

The  thought  is  almost  wholly  the  thought  of  the  ancients, 
the  science  that  of  the  Almagest  of  Ptolemy.  It  was  according 
to  the  spirit  of  Humanism  to  treat  all  that  had  been  thought  and 
done  by  mankind  between  the  death  of  the  last  of  the  Roman 
writers  and  the  rise  of  Humanism  as  null  and  void,  and  to  begin 
in  the  fifteenth  and  sixteenth  centuries  as  if  the  preceding 
thousand  years  had  never  come  and  gone.  In  these  long  years 
a  great  deal  had  been  done  in  Astronomy.  Facts  had 
accumulated  from  the  observations  first  of  the  Alexandrian 
Greeks  and  then  of  the  Arabs,  and  more  than  one  guess  at  the 
truth  had  been  made.  Just  twelve  years  before  Buchanan 
began  to  write  De  Sphaera,  Copernicus  had  announced  a  new 
theory  of  the  heavens,  which,  though  partial  and  tainted  with 
error,  was  to  upset  the  received  doctrine  and  lead  to  the 
marvellous  developments  of  the  next  century,  and  to  the 
establishment  of  a  base  of  operations  from  which  many  great  and 
acute  minds  have  since  gone  forth  to  gather  astronomic  spoil. 
The  views  regarding  the  universe  held  by  men  like  Buchanan, 
satisfactory  to  strong  and  reasonable  minds  like  his,  have  long 
since  departed  from  human  thought  and  are  now  interesting 
only  as  a  stage  in  a  long  journey. 

Briefly  stated  the  theory  of  the  ancients  was  as  follows.  The 
earth  was  round,  but  stationary.  Its  size  was  approximately 
known.  It  was  divided  into  five  zones.  Round  it  revolved  in 
circles  the  Moon,  Mercury,  Venus,  the  Sun,  Mars,  Jupiter, 
Saturn  and  the  fixed  stars.  As  each  of  these  had  a  different 
time  and  manner  of  revolving,  each  must  be  fixed  to  a 
transparent  hollow  shell  or  sphere  one  within  the  other,  the 
earth  being  in  the  centre.  Of  the  seven  crystal  spheres  the 
fourth  or  middle  one  had  the  sun  attached  to  it.  The  eighth 
carried  all  the  fixed  stars. 

Modifications  of  this  had  been  made  from  time  to  time,  for 
example  by  adding  small  circles  (epicycles)  to  the  larger  ones  to 
explain  the  progression  and  retrogression  of  the  planets,  or 
en-ones  as  Buchanan  calls  them. 

In  1543  Copernicus,  in  extremis  at  Frauenburg,  had  touched 
with  his  dying  hand  the  first  printed  copy  of  his  book  De 
RevoluUonibns,  in  which  the  theory  is  stated  that  the  sun  and 
not   the   earth   is   the   stationary    centre   round    which    all   the 


Buchanan's  "  De  Sphaera"       157 

heavenly  bodies  revolve.  For  each  planet  and  for  the  fixed  stars 
he  still  retains  a  great  hollow  crystal  sphere  to  which  each  is 
fixed  and  with  which  it  revolves.  This  notion  was  universally 
rejected  by  Protestant  Europe  and  condemned  as  impious  by 
such  leaders  as  Luther  and  Melancthon.  It  is  therefore  no 
shame  to  Buchanan  that  he  utters  a  similar  denunciation  of  the 
Copernican  theory.  Very  slowly  indeed  did  this  revolutionary 
theory  gain  acceptance.  Forty  years  younger  than  Buchanan 
was  Tycho  Brahe,  the  Swede,  who  devoted  his  restless  active 
mind  to  astronomical  observations  and  did  much  to  enrich  the 
records.  The  chief  of  his  contributions  is  a  theory,  differing 
from  both  the  Ptolemaic  and  Copernican,  to  the  effect  that  the 
planets  revolve  round  the  sun,  but  the  sun,  carrying  them  with 
him,  revolves  round  the  earth,  which  is  stationary.  This  was 
less  of  an  upheaval  of  old  beliefs  and  gained  more  adherents, 
being  moreover  later  in  time.  The  Copernican  theory  is 
denounced  by  Buchanan,  but,  although  the  writing  of  the  Bt 
Sphaera  was  earlier  than  the  discoveries  of  Tycho  Brahe,  and  we 
do  not  know  how  Buchanan  received  them,  we  find  him  in  later 
life  corresponding  with  Tycho  Brahe  on  intimate  terms,  having 
received  from  him  through  Gulielmus  Lummisdaile  an  account 
of  his  discovery  of  the  new  star  in  Cassiopeia.  When  James 
VI.  visited  the  Court  of  Denmark  in  connection  with  his 
marriage,  he  sailed  to  Tycho  Brahe's  Baltic  Island  and  visited 
him  in  his  tower,  Uranienburg,  where  he  was  shocked  to  see  in 
an  honoured  place  a  portrait  of  Buchanan,  whose  memory  he 
always  recalled  with  fear  and  dislike.  It  does  not  seem  probable 
that  Buchanan's  powerful  mind  could  fail  to  see  the  truth  and 
reasonableness  of  the  new  theories,  at  least  in  his  later  years. 
However  this  may  be,  the  phenomena  remain  the  same  whether 
we  give  the  true  explanation  of  them  or  not,  and  the  greater 
part  of  any  true  description  of  the  heavens  as  seen  by  one  who 
knows  nothing  of  the  telescope  or  of  gravitation  will  remain  true 
to  all  time.  Should  the  description  be  vivid  and  poetical  it 
will  remain  interesting  and  attractive,  and  such  a  description  is 
the  purpose  of  Buchanan's  poem. 

The  poem  is  in  five  books.  Of  these  the  first  three  were 
finished,  containing  altogether  eighteen  hundred  hexameters. 
The  fourth  stops  short  at  the  119th  line  and  the  fifth  at  the 
463rd.  In  this  incomplete  state  the  poem  was  first  published 
at  Geneva  in  1584,  two  years  after  the  death  of  Buchanan,  and 


158  Science  and  Humanism: 

again  in  1585.  Supplements  were  written  to  the  fourth  and 
fifth  books  by  Pincierus,  and  the  poem  in  this  completed  form 
was  published  in  1587  and  frequently  since  along  with  his  other 
poems. 

When  Buchanan  began  the  poem  in  1555  he  was  tutor  to 
Timoleon  de  Cosse,  a  boy  of  about  fourteen,  and  he  addresses 
him  in  each  of  the  introductions.  It  is  not  very  clear  why 
Buchanan  did  not  finish  the  poem.  He  refers  to  it  in  a  letter 
to  Tycho  Brahe  in  1576,  and  blames  his  illness  and  his 
busy  life.  Again  in  1579  he  makes  a  similar  excuse.  These 
causes  had  not  prevented  him  from  writing  much  poetry 
of  a  different  class,  nor  the  De  Jure  Regni  ajiud  Scotos, 
nor  the  great  history.  Had  the  interest  remained  keen, 
and  had  the  enthusiasm  for  the  subject  not  been  overcome  by 
others,  these  excuses  would  probably  not  have  been  made,  or 
needed.  It  seems  as  if  the  march  of  the  years  had  carried 
Buchanan,  as  it  was  carrying  mankind  generally,  to  new  stand- 
points. The  aternce  leguin  hahence  were  still  there  in  1579  as 
in  1555,  but  it  was  dawning  on  the  best  minds  that  the  laws 
were  not  what  they  had  long  supposed.  Kepler  was  not  far  off, 
and  neither  he  nor  Newton  appeared  in  a  world  altogether 
unprepared  for  them. 

The  first  book  begins  in  the  epic  style  with  a  statement  of 
the  subject : 

Quam  varisE  mundi  partes,  quo  semina  rerum 
Ftedere  conveniant  disoordia,  lucis  et  umbrce 
Tempora  quis  motus  regat,  sestum  frigore  mutet, 
Obaouret  Solis  vultum  Lunaeque  teuebris, 
Paiidere  fert  animus. 

Then  follows  an  invocation : 

Tu  qui  f  ulgentia  puro 
Lumine  templa  habitas,  ooulis  impervia  nostris, 
Rerum  sanote  parens,  audaoibus  aunue  cceptis  ; 
Dum  late  in  populos  ferimus  tua  facta,  polique 
Immensum  reseramus  opus  :  gens  nescia  veri 
Ut  residem  longaque  aniraum  caligine  niersum 
Attollat  coelo,  et,  flammantia  mceuia  mundi 
Dum  stupet,  et  vioibus  remeantia  tempora  certis 
Auctorem  agnoaoat,  tnntam  qui  robore  molem 
Fulciat,  aeternia  legum  moderetur  habenis, 
Consilio  inuumerosque  bonus  oonformet  ad  usus. 
There  is  here  no  spontaneous  or  atheistic  origin  of  things  as 
in  Lucretius.     The  aim  is  rather  that  of  Milton,  "  to  justify  the 
ways  of  God  to  men."      The  flammantia  moenia  mundi  echoes 


Buchanan's  "  De  Sphaera"        169 

Lucretius,  however.  The  aeternis  legum  moderetur  habenis  is 
very  familiar  to  a  reader  of  Buchanan's  Psalms  and  recalls  the 
doctrine  of  the  De  Jure  liegni.  The  frequent  use  of  this 
phrase  is  indeed  one  of  the  mannerisms  of  Buchanan. 

He  calls  on  his  pupil  Timoleon  in  a  very  beautiful  passage 
to  join  him  in  the  study  of  this  great  subject: 

Tu  mihi,  Timoleon,  magni  spes  maxima  patris, 
Nee  patriae  minor,  Aonii  novus  incola  montis, 
Adde  gradum  comes,  et  teneris  assuesce  sub  annis 
Castalidum  nemora,  et  saoros  aocedere  fontes, 
Nympharumque  choros,  populoque  ignota  profano 
Otia,  nee  darano  nee  avarae  obnoxia  curae. 

Then  he  goes  directly  into  his  subject  with  a  statement  of 
all  that  is  connoted  by  the  term  mundns.  There  is  one  ruler 
of  the  universe,  but  there  is  no  vis  nativa.  He  then  explains 
that  the  world  is  made  up  of  four  formative  elements,  earth, 
water,  air  and  fire,  and  that  these  settle  themselves  by  their 
own  weight  in  their  respective  places.  Every  part  of  the  earth 
would  thus  have  been  under  the  water  : 

Nisi  cura  Dei  se  attollere  montes 

Jussisset,  vallesque  premi,  terramque  cavernis 

Hiscere,  et  ingentes  htimori  aperire  lacunas  .  .  . 

This  arrangement  was  made  in  the  beginning  by  God  for  the 
sake  of  the  human  race  that  was  to  be. 

He  also  proves  that  the  world  is  round,  by  well-known 
proofs,  e.g.,  (1)  the  sun  rising  later  in  western  countries  and 
earlier  in  eastern,  (2)  the  shadow  of  the  earth  on  the  moon 
being  always  round : 

Redduntque  trigona  trigonum, 
Quadratam  faoiem  quadrata,  rotunda  rotundam. 

A  young  pupil  need  not  think  that  lofty  mountains  and  deep 
valleys  contradict  this,  for  they  are  as  nothing  to  the  total 
bulk,  no  more  indeed  than  the  slight  roughnesses  which  give 
foothold  to  a  fly  on  a  globe  of  glass,  which  is  rough  to  him, 
who  is  so  small  and  so  close  to  it,  but  which  seems  smooth  and 
round  to  our  eyes : 

Non  aecus  ac  vitreum  si  musca  perambulat  orbem. 

Qui  nobis  penitus  laevis  videatur,  et  omni 

Asperitate  carens,  sentit  tamen  ilia  tumorem, 

Parvaque  inaequali  figit  vestigia  clivo  .   .   . 
The  disappearing  of  the  hull  of  a  receding  ship  before  that 
of  the  masts  is  a  proof  of  the  rotundity  of  the  water.     This  is 


160  Science  and  Humanism: 

to  be  inferred  otherwise,  for  as  the  conflagration  that  destroyed 
Troy  had  the  same  properties  and  obeyed  the  same  laws  as  the 
smallest  flame,  such  as  that  of  "  exigvae  pojmlatrix  flamma 
lucvrnat,"  so  must  the  great  ocean  have  the  same  shape  as  a 
drop  of  dew : 

Ergo  velut  tenui  8e  ros  argenteus  orbe 

Lubricat,  et  nitidis  depingit  gramina  gemmis, 

Et  quae  de  madidis  dependet  stiria  tectis ; 

Sic  late  effuBus  pontis  remeabilis  humor 

In  cumulum  aasurgit,  formamque  affeotat  eandeni. 

But  why  labour  to  prove  this  rotundity  by  reasoning? 
Avarice,  which  nothing  can  withstand,  has  led  Spanish  ships 
round  the  world,  and  there  are  no  secrets  now : 

Omnia  jam  vasti  ratibus  panduntur  Iberis 
Claustra  orbis,  rerum  longis  incognita  seclis 
Jam  secreta  patent. 

The  barrenness  of  Spain,  " sicca  vix  fertile  sparto  "  (esparto 
grass,  to  wit)  has  given  place  to  luxury.  The  products  of  all 
lands  are  being  brought  home,  cotton,  silk,  frankincense,  ginger, 
pepper.  The  Arab  collects  cinnamon  for  us,  and  (very  oddly) 
"  Congerit  in  caecas  aiirum  formica  cavernas."  The  other  side 
of  the  picture  is  the  loss  of  the  best  of  all  the  sons  of  Spain  by 
emigration.  They  leave  all  that  men  hold  dear  and  go  forth, 
"  auspice  avaritia."  This  is  expanded  into  a  long  and  eloquent 
passage,  after  which  the  description  of  the  mundvs  is  resumed. 

Up  to  this  point  the  structure  of  the  poem  has  been  given 
in  detail  that  the  reader  may  form  some  idea  of  its  nature,  but 
the  available  space  admits  of  only  a  very  general  statement  of 
what  the  rest  of  the  poem  contains.  It  must  have  been  noticed 
that  a  high  and  generous  soul  animates  this  noble  poem,  no 
didactic  opportunity  is  let  pass  unimproved,  nor  is  any  chance 
omitted  of  colouring  the  astronomic  lore  with  the  rich  hues  of 
classic  myth.  Above  all  the  natural  descriptions  are  very  fine, 
and  anything  of  the  nature  of  a  story  is  always  well  told. 

After  showing  that  the  Earth  does  not  rotate,  such  an  idea 
being  absurd,  he  tells  how  the  earth  had  been  measured.  An 
arc  had  been  measured  on  the  Assyrian  plain  and  the  elevation 
of  the  Pole  Star  observed.  From  this  the  circumference  was 
found,  and,  by  dividing  this  by  three,  the  diameter. 

The  earth  is  then  compared  with  the  sun's  sphere  and  with 
the  great  Olympus,  that  is,  the  sphere  of  the  fixed  stars.     If 


Buchanan's  "  De  Sphaera"        161 

Phoebus  were  to  trust  Timoleon  for  a  day  with  the  chariot  of 
Phaethon  (Phaethonteas  habenas,  favourite  word!)  how  small 
would  the  earth  appear  to  him  looking  down  from  the  summit 
of  the  heaven,  if  any  earth  would  then  be  visible  at  all,  and 
how  small  would  the  sun  be ! 

Quantulus  est  cum  stelligero  coUatus  Olympo  ! 
Reason  cannot  comprehend  in  numbers  the  proportion  that  the 
earth  would  bear  to  the  vast  Mundus  which  contains  all.  Yet 
this  small  place  is  the  abode  of  man  and  of  beasts  and  birds. 
The  habitable  part  is  smaller  still  when  the  ocean,  the  lakes  and 
streams,  the  marshes  and  deserts  and  mountain  ranges  are  all 
subtracted.  It  is  like  a  small  island  floating  on  the  great  deep. 
And  what  a  home  man  makes  of  this  earth  of  his ! 

Quantula  pars  rerum  est,  in  qua  se  gloria  jaotat, 
Ira  freniit,  metus  exanimat,  dolor  urit,  egestas 
Cogit  opes  ;  ferro,  insidiis,  flamma  atque  veneno 
Cernitur,  et  trepido  fervent  humana  tumultu. 

The  Second  Book  begins  with  a  beautiful  introduction,  too 
long  to  quote.  Timoleon  is  invited  to  raise  his  mind  from  the 
earth  and  accompany  his  guide  through  the  immense  tracts  of 
heaven.  By  degrees  his  eyes  will  become  clear  and  "  Nudaque 
se  nobis  offert  natura  videndam," — a  very  modern  way  of 
putting  it.  He  then  explains  how  the  stars  move.  They 
revolve  in  a  perpetual  and  constant  circle,  "  for  that  is  the  only 
force  in  round  bodies."  This  is  effected  by  each  one  being 
fixed  to  a  sphere  through  which  it  sticks  like  a  nail  in  the  rim 
of  a  wheel  or  a  knot  in  a  board  of  maple  : 

Supereat  ut  fixa  per  orbes 
Quaeque  sues  (veluti  tympana  summa  rotarum 
Olavus  inhaereacit,  tabula  vel  nodus  acerna) 
Perpetuo  maneant,  et  cum  se  verterit  orbis, 
Astra  suura  peragant  cum  ccelo  tracta  meatum. 

These  crystal  spheres  are  eight  in  number,  sphere  within 
sphere,  the  Earth  being  in  the  centre.  Next  to  it  is  the  Moon, 
then  Mercury,  Venus,  the  Sun,  Mars,  Jupiter,  Saturn  and 
lastly  all  the  fixed  stars.  A  beautiful  passage  describes  this 
eighth  sphere  flying  with  its  "  swift  array  of  stars,  a  thousand 
eyes,  a  thousand  little  fires  under  the  sleepy  night  scattering  the 
dark  shadows  of  pitchy  gloom,  lest  the  wayfarer  rashly  wander 
through  the  dark,  lest  the  wandering  sailor  lose  himself  on 
unknown  seas,  lest  the  watchman  waking  all  the  night  should 
M 


162  Science  and  Humanism  : 

tell  the  hours  unequally."  Above  this  eighth  sphere  are  the 
secret  temples  of  the  Gods,  where  neither  diseases  nor  grief  nor 
anxious  care  disturb  the  fretting  minds  with  fear,  but  where 
there  is  rest  without  a  care  and  life  that  knows  not  old  age. 
The  wisdom  of  the  ancients  had  come  to  know  these  eight 
spheres  and  their  motions,  and  though  reason  has  shown  that 
what  they  taught  is  true,  "  nevertheless  ignorance  sunk  so  far 
in  blind  darkness  ceases  not  to  rail  at  them  and  is  daring 
enough  to  condemn  the  heaven  to  rest  and  to  turn  the  solid 
earth  into  a  swiftly  moving  mass."  He  then  explains  that  the 
heaven  is  spherical,  giving  very  fanciful  reasons,  and  refers  to 
the  Assyrian  astronomers  using  an  artificial  globe,  "  ad  speciem 
penitus  tornata  rotundam."  The  heavenly  bodies  revolve  from 
east  to  west,  returning  daily  to  the  spot  from  whence  they 
started  and  following  the  same  path.  And  so  the  book  proceeds 
to  state  the  movements  of  the  five  planets,  quinque  errones,  the 
Sun  and  Moon  which  are  called  Tiiania  astra,  and  advises 
Timoleon,  in  order  to  understand  them  better,  to  draw  their 
orbits  in  sand.  The  conclusion  from  the  observation  of  the 
heavens  and  the  regularity  of  the  motions  of  the  stars  is  that 
there  are  no  men,  however  uncultured,  who  can  look  upon  the 
stars  and  not  believe  that  there  is  a  God : 

esse  Deum  credat,  vim  scilicet  illam, 
Quae  regat  immensam  juato  moderamine  molem, 
Et  moveat  nostros  per  tot  miracula  seusus. 

The  third  book  of  De  SpJiaera  abounds  in  beautiful  passages 
as  well  as  in  such  information  as  a  scholar  was  expected  to 
know  about  the  stars. 

"  Hitherto  you  have  roamed  widely,  Timoleon,  in  the  vast 
Olympus,  with  wandering  chariot,  nowhere  a  resting  place, 
nowhere  an  abiding  home.  Tighten  now  for  a  little  your  loose 
reins,  and  with  your  mind  narrow  down  the  great  fields  and  the 
measureless  expanse  of  ether,  and  with  me  mark  out  with 
boundary  lines  the  limits  of  the  world,  so  that  a  mind,  child 
of  heaven,  may  grow  accustomed  little  by  little  to  know  its 
native  home,  while  the  breezes  rustle  in  the  leaves,  while,  softly 
gleaming,  the  glory  of  the  meadows  harmonizes,  while  Apollo 
favours,  and  the  Muses,  not  unpropitious,  smile  kindly  on  our 
songs." 

After  this  introduction  begins  a  systematic  survey  of  the 
heavens,  with  much  technical  information  and  abundant  myth. 


Buchanan's  "De  Sphaera"  163 

First  the  poles  are  described,  located  and  named,  the  Arctic  and 
Antarctic  Circles,  the  Tropics,  the  Solstices,  the  Equator,  and 
the  five  Zones.  The  study  of  this  as  an  astronomical  treatise 
must  have  been  extremely  hard  owing  to  the  continual  calls  it 
makes  on  classical  lore.  The  constellation,  Aries,  for  example, 
is  not  called  always  by  so  direct  a  name,  but  is  designated 
Phryxi  vector.  References  to  more  obscure  myths  than  even 
this  are  constantly  pulling  the  student  up.  From  the  Zones 
we  pass  on  to  the  Ecliptic  and  the  Zodiac : 

Hie  auro  gravidas  Phoebus  molitur  habenas, 

Hie  varias  ponitque  et  sumit  Delia  formas, 

Hie  quinque  Errones,  sed  certis  legibus  errant, 

Exereentque  suas  eoelo  gaudente  choreas. 

Then  follow  the  twelve  Signs  of  the  Zodiac  in  order,  from 
Phryxi  vector  onwards.  Each  constellation  is  described, 
sometimes  in  exquisite  lines,  and  the  story  of  each  is  told. 
Then  comes  a  beautiful  passage  about  the  Milky  Way  and  the 
various  stories  of  its  origin ;  whether  it  was  a  streak  of  milk 
from  Juno's  breast,  or  the  track  of  Phaethon's  headlong  car, 
or,  anticipating  modern  discoveries,  the  accumulated  light  of 
many  feeble  stars : 

,     .     .     multas  magno  sine  lumine  stellas 
Exiguas  credunt  coUata  luce  nitorem 

Gignere    .     .     .     .     , 

The  Celestial  Zones  are  then  marked  off.  Then  the 
Terrestrial  Zones  are  described,  each  giving  opportunity  for 
splendid  natural  description  in  which  Buchanan  excels.  Then 
follows  a  passage  about  the  tropical  regions  and  the  overflowing 
of  the  Nile,  a  favourite  mystery  with  ancient  geographers  from 
Herodotus  downwards.  The  book  closes  with  a  fine  passage 
about  the  Spanish  ships  once  more. 

The  fourth  book  is  a  mere  fragment.  The  subject  is  stated 
in  the  first  eleven  lines,  thus : 

Nunc  mihi  stellarumque  ortus  obitusque  canenti 
Sis  facilis,  caussas  penitus  dum  promo  latentes, 
Cur  lenta  Oceanum  linquaut  haec,  ilia  repente 
Signa  per  obliquum  properent  ascendere  coelum  ; 
Cur  itenim  falsas  subeant  haec  ooyus  undas, 
Ilia  trahant  lento  molimine  gressus  : 
Our  ubi  Sol  mediam  cceli  conscendit  in  arcem, 
Longior  hie,  alibi  contraotior  exeat  umbra  : 
Cur  Thebaea  suas  consumat  Pyramis  umbras  : 
Cur  hie  aequa  dies  semper  cum  nocte  recurrat, 
Una  dies  et  nox  una  illic  finiat  annus. 


164  Science  and  Humanism  : 

Rising  and  setting  are  defined  and  compared  to  the  birth  and 
death  of  mortals.  Risings  and  settings  are  classed  as  ortus 
matutinus  and  ortus  vespertmus  or  receptus  matutinus  and 
lapsus  vespertinus.  Stars  rise  and  set  at  different  times  in 
different  countries.  The  Chaldean  astronomer  by  reckoning 
fifteen  degrees  of  arc  to  the  hour  was  able  to  explain  the 
apparent  irregularities : 

.  .  .  quanto 
Tardius  haec  illia  spatio  emergantque  cadantque, 
Et  velut  apposita  motns  deprendere  norma. 

The  fifth  book  opens  with  a  fine  apostrophe : 

Macti  animi,  heroes,  seclis  melioribus  orti, 

Qui  primi  .  .   . 

.  .  .  magni  intrastis  penetralia  cceli. 

and  taught  mankind  the  truth. 

Not  blind  ambition,  nor  alluring  pleasure,  nor  wakeful  cares, 
nor  the  pallid  plague  of  gain  kept  you  from  penetrating  with 
your  minds  into  regions  hidden  from  the  senses,  and  from 
dragging  out  of  the  secret  chambers  of  the  gods  the  laws  of  the 
stars  unknown  throughout  the  ages. 

In  contrast  with  these  macti  animi  is  the  mind  of  those  who 
care  for  none  of  these  things.  A  noble  passage  describes  these, 
the  majority  of  mankind.  So  little  does  such  a  mind  know  of 
nature  that : 

quicquid  vel  profuit  olim, 

Vel  nocuit,  putat  esse  Deum. 

Thunder  and  lightning,  even  the  squeaking  of  a  mouse,  or  the 
flight  of  a  raven  terrifies  such  a  mind,  and  vain  superstitions 
prevail.  Of  this  ignorance  the  Astrologer  takes  full  advantage. 
The  ascription  of  the  blame  of  all  evil  to  the  stars  teaches  men 
to  give  loose  rein  to  wickedness,  hands  over  heaven  to  the 
wicked,  and,  by  excusing,  encourages  the  mad  doings  of  kings. 
Not  the  vulgar  throng  only,  but  the  very  greatest  of  men  are 
scared  by  eclipses  of  the  sun  and  moon.  Such  a  fear  caused 
the  defeat  of  the  Athenians  and  the  loss  of  their  fleet  long  ago 
in  Sicily.  So  at  Pydna,  when  the  armies  of  Perseus  and 
Aemilius  Paulus  were  face  to  face,  the  former  was  terror- 
stricken  by  an  eclipse  of  the  moon :  so  would  the  Roman  army 
have  been,  had  not  Gallus  (the  orM,or,  who  was  tribune  of  the 
soldiers  in  that  campaign),  addressing  the  army,  forewarned 
them  of  the  coming  eclipse  and  explained  its  cause. 


Buchanan's  "De  Sphaera"  165 

Addressing  Timoleon  the  poet  proceeds  to  explain  the  nature 
of  eclipses  and  their  cause.  First  of  all  he  gives  a  tribute  of 
praise  to  whoever  it  was  who  first  delivered  the  minds  of  men 
from  so  great  darkness,  and  comments  on  the  strange  fact  that 
men  have  recorded  the  deeds  of  Xerxes,  of  Caesar  and  of 
Alexander,  but  have  forgotten  what  benefits  they  received  from 
Endymion.     He  shall  no  longer  be  forgotten : 

nam  nostrae  si  qua  est  fiducia  Musae, 
posterity  shall  remember  him  with  gratitude. 

Then  follows  in  a  beautiful  passage  the  story  of  Endymion, 
the  shepherd,  paying  for  perennial  youth  with  perennial  sleep 
upon  the  Latmian  hills,  loved  by  Delia  (the  moon)  who  visited 
him  and  embraced  him  every  night,  till,  awakened  at  last,  he 
returned  her  love  and  was  taken  up  by  her  into  her  kingdom  and 
shown  all  its  secrets.  This  knowledge  Endymion,  having 
returned  to  the  Latmian  hills,  diffused  throughout  Greece. 
Late  in  the  ages  it  reached  the  Romans,  of  whom  Gallus  was 
the  first  to  expound  it.  Again  at  more  length  the  story  of  the 
eclipse  at  the  battle  of  Pydna  is  told.  Then  the  theory  of 
eclipses  is  stated. 

The  temptation  is  great  to  continue  an  account  of  this  fine 
poem  in  detail.  Enough  has  been  said,  however,  to  give  the 
reader  some  idea  of  its  scope  and  the  order  of  the  topics. 
Nothing  but  an  actual  perusal  of  it  can  give  any  idea  of  its 
power,  or  of  the  splendour  of  the  genius  of  its  author.  Is  it 
too  much  to  hope  that  one  day  it  may  be  translated  and  made 
known  to  a  larger  circle  by  some  one  better  equipped  for  the 
task  than  the  author  of  this  imperfect  sketch  can  claim  to  be  ? 

J.  W.  M. 


XVIII. 

The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan. 

When  arranging  the  details  of  the  Quater-Centenary  Celebration 
at  St.  Andrews,  the  General  Committee  decided  that  there  should 
be  a  Buchanan  Exhibition  in  the  University  Library  consisting 
of  portraits,  books,  manuscripts,  and,  if  possible,  relics  of  the 
poet  and  historian.  The  search  for  manuscripts  and  relics  was 
ultimately  abandoned  and  the  exhibition  confined  chiefly  to 
portraits  and  printed  books.  It  was  hoped  that  it  might  have 
been  possible  to  make  the  display  of  editions  practically  complete 
and  to  print  a  catalogue  of  them  in  the  form  of  a  Buchanan 
bibliography.  But  it  was  soon  found  that  many  blanks  could 
not  readily  be  filled  up  and  that  it  would  consequently  be  impos- 
sible to  include  a  satisfactory  Buchanan  bibliography  in  the 
present  memorial  volume.  Such  a  bibliography  may  be 
attempted  later  on,  when  the  permanent  collection  of  Buchanan's 
works  in  the  University  Library  has  made  further  progress.  This 
collection  has  been  got  together  mainly  within  the  last  twenty 
years,  but  it  is  already  a  fairly  representative  one.  Up  to  that 
time  very  little  interest  had  been  taken  in  the  bibliography  of 
Buchanan  at  St.  Andrews,  and  the  selection  of  his  works  in  the 
University  Library  was  a  very  meagre  one.  So  far  as  can  be 
learned  from  extant  catalogues,  St.  Leonard's  College  Library 
never  possessed  more  than  one  volume — the  Basel  edition  of  the 
Franciscanus  and  other  poems — and  it  was  presented  by  Dr. 
Mungo  Murray.  If  it  is  the  same  copy  that  is  now  in  the 
University  Library  it  had  previously  belonged  to  Mr.  Thomas 
Gilbert  "  iure  emptionis  possessor,  10  solid."  St.  Salvator's 
College  Library  was  better  off,  having  at  least  eight  volumes; 
but  these  have  nearly  all  disappeared.  In  1825  the  University 
Library  catalogue  contained  only  twelve  entries  under  Buchanan  : 
it  now  contains  over  a  hundred. 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  167 

Pending  the  appearance  of  a  formal  bibliography,  it  has  been 
thought  desirable,  as  a  slight  record  of  the  exhibition,  to  give  a 
short  account  of  Buchanan's  writings  and  of  the  principal 
editions  through  which  they  have  passed  in  their  original  texts 
as  well  as  in  translations.  It  need  hardly  be  said  that  the  sub- 
ject matter  of  the  books  does  not  come  within  the  scope  of  these 
notes.  Nothing  more  has  been  attempted  than  a  bare  statement 
of  titles,  publishers  or  printers,  and  dates.  What  follows  has 
been  written  mainly  on  the  basis  of  the  volumes  exhibited : 
editions  not  actually  seen  have  only  been  mentioned  when  they 
were  found  recorded  in  library  catalogues  or  in  other  reliable 
works  of  reference. 

The  complete  works  of  George  Buchanan  were  first  published, 
under  the  editorship  of  Thomas  Ruddiman,  by  Robert  Freebairn, 
at  Edinburgh,  in  1715,  in  two  folio  volumes.  The  plan  of  such 
a  collection  had  originally  been  formed  by  George  Mosman, 
another  Edinburgh  printer,  and  the  impression  was  actually 
proceeding  as  early  as  1702 ;  but  after  a  few  sheets  had  been 
completed  the  property  was  transferred  to  Freebairn.^  Both 
editor  and  publisher  did  their  best  to  make  the  edition  worthy 
of  the  author.  Ruddiman's  preface,  annotations,  and  critical 
dissertation  are  of  great  value  and  display  exceptional  know- 
ledge and  learning,  while  his  care  for  the  text  is  vouched  for 
in  many  illuminating  foot-notes.  Although  somewhat  incon- 
venient in  size,  the  volumes  are  pleasant  to  read,  being  well 
printed  in  bold  clear  type.  The  large  paper  copies  on  superior 
paper,  such  as  that  in  possession  of  the  Signet  Library,  are 
admirable  examples  of  book-production.  But  Ruddiman's 
manner  of  dealing  with  his  author's  political  opinions  so  offended 
many  of  Buchanan's  admirers  that  an  association  was  speedily 
formed  for  the  express  purpose  of  producing  another  edition 
of  his  works.  This  scheme  proved  abortive,  and  as  yet  no 
new  edition  of  Buchanan's  works  has  been  brought  out  in 
Scotland.  In  1725,  however,  an  edition  was  published  at 
Leyden,  in  two  stout  quarto  volumes,  edited  by  Dr.  Peter 
Burman.  This  edition  is,  in  the  main,  a  reprint  of  Ruddiman's, 
with  additional  annotations,  chiefly  of  a  philological  nature, 
by  the  new  editor.  It  is  less  correctly  printed  than  the  Edin- 
burgh edition,  but  has  the  advantage  of  being  more  convenient 

'  Irving,  "  Memoirs  of  Buchanan,"  1817,  p.  IX. 


168  The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan 

to  work  with.'  Some  of  Burman's  observations  on  Buchanan 
and  his  country  gave  so  much  offence  in  Scotland  that  Ruddi- 
man  felt  called  upon  in  his  old  age  to  administer  a  severe  rebuke 
to  the  Dutch  Professor. ' 

Roughly  speaking,  about  two-thirds  of  the  entire  bulk  of 
Buchanan's  writings  are  in  prose,  the  remaining  third  being 
in  different  kinds  of  verse.  He  made  his  first  public  appear- 
ance as  a  writer  in  prose,  but  in  all  probability  his  earliest 
efforts  at  literary  composition  were  in  Latin  verse.  This  may, 
in  fact,  be  inferred  from  what  is  said  in  the  Vita  of  his 
having  given  much  attention  to  the  writing  of  poetry,  partly 
from  natural  inclination  and  partly  from  necessity,  in  his  early 
student  days  at  Paris.  Like  many  another  teacher,  Buchanan 
felt  the  need  of  a  new  text-book  for  his  pupils'  use — something 
more  practical  than  the  Doctrmale  Piierorum.  of  Alexander, 
and  less  tedious  than  the  Grammatica  of  Despauterius. 
And  so  he  translated  into  Latin  the  elementary  grammar  of 
the  Latin  language  which  Thomas  Linacre  had  composed  in 
English  for  the  use  of  the  Princess  Mary,  and  had  it  printed 
by  Robertus  Stephanus  at  Paris  in  1,533.  The  success  of  his 
enterprise  is  attested  by  the  fact  that  edition  after  edition  of 
the  translation  followed  each  other  in  rapid  succession.  At 
least  ten  editions  are  said  to  have  been  published  in  France 
within  thirty  years.  Of  these  the  following  six  were  included  in 
the  exhibition  at  St.  Andrews  besides  the  first  edition  of  1533  :  — 
Lyons,  1539 ;  Paris,  1540  ;  Lyons,  1541  and  1544  ;  Paris,  1546 
and  1550.  All  the  Parisian  editions  were  published  by 
Stephanus.  The  first  Lyons  edition  was  published  by  the  heirs 
of  Simon  Vincent ;  the  two  others  (which  differ  only  in  date) 
by  Sebastian  Gryphius.  The  dates  of  other  editions  appear  to 
be  1545,  1548,  1552,  1556,  and  1559. 

Following    the    Riidiinenta    Grammntices    came    the    four 

1  Father  Prout,  writing  of  Buchanan,  rather  overshot  the  mark  by 
twitting  the  Soota  with  "  a  greater  disposition  to  glory  in  the  fame  he  has 
acquired  for  them  than  an  anxiety  to  read  his  works,  of  which  there  was  never 
an  edition  published  on  the  other  side  of  the  great  wall  of  Antonine  save  one, 
and  that  not  until  the  year  171.'),  by  Ruddiman  in  1  vol.  folio.  The  con- 
tinental editions  are  innumerable"  (Reliques,  Bohn'.s  Illustrated  Library,  1866, 
p.  559).  The  editions  of  portions  of  Buchanan's  writings  published  abroad  are 
very  numerous  indeed  ;  but  when  it  comes  to  a  question  of  editions  of  his 
"  Works,"  Scotland  is  rather  more  than  ovon  with  the  Continent. 

^  Irving,  "Memoirs  of  Buchanan,"  1817,  p.  XIV. 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  169 

plays — Medea,  Alcestis,  Jephthes,  Baptistes — two  of  them 
being  translations  and  two  original  compositions.  All  four 
were  written  at  Bordeaux,  while  Buchanan  was  a  Regent 
in  the  College  of  Guyenne,  and  were  acted  by  the  students  as 
part  of  their  academical  training  in  accordance  with  a  widely 
prevalent  custom  of  the  time.  The  Medea  was  acted  at 
Bordeaux  in  1543,  and  was  first  published  at  Paris,  by  Michel 
Vascosan,  in  1544.  ^  It  was  included  (along  with  the 
Alcestis)  in  a  volume  of  Tragoediae  Selectae  published 
by  Henricus  Stephanus  in  1567,  and  has  frequently  been 
reprinted.  It  is  not  known  when  the  Alcestis  was  first 
acted.  Vascosan  was  licensed  to  print  it  on  7th  February 
1553,  but  he  seems  to  have  delayed  doing  so  until  December 
1556,  when  the  volume  appeared  in  small  quarto  form  and 
printed  in  much  larger  type  than  the  Medea.  As  already 
remarked  it  was  reprinted  along  with  the  Medea  in  1567. 
These  two  plays  were  again  issued  together  (along  with  the 
Greek  text  of  Euripides)  by  Ruddiman  "  in  usum  Academiarum 
Scoticarum "  in  1722.  Buchanan's  metrical  version  of  the 
Alcestis  was  also  appended  to  J.  H.  Monk's  edition  of  the 
Greek  text  published  at  Cambridge  in  1816  and  several  times 
reprinted.  Both  plays  have  likewise  been  inserted  in  numerous 
editions  of  Buchanan's  poetical  works  from  1568  onwards. 

The  Baptistes,  Buchanan's  first  original  composition,  was 
probably  written  about  the  year  1541,  but  it  was  not  published 
until  1578,  when  two  editions  appear  to  have  been  issued  sim- 
ultaneously— one  at  Edinburgh  "  apud  Henricum  Charteris," 
and  another  at  London,  without  publisher's  name,  but  with  the 
notice  "  Et  prostant  Antuerpiae  apud  lacobum  Henricium." 
Copies  bearing  the  Edinburgh  imprint  are  extremely  rare,  but  it 
is  in  all  respects  uniform  with  the  London  issue,  which  may  have 
been  put  upon  the  market  by  Vautrollier.  It  was  dedicated 
to  the  young  King  in  a  brief  "  Epistola,"  dated  at  Stirling  1st 
Novemlser  1576.  In  the  following  year  (1579)  a  new  edition 
appeared  at  Frankfort  "  apud  Andream  Wechelum,"  and  in  the 
same  year  it  was  reprinted,  along  with  other  matter,  at  Paris 
"apud    Mamertum    Patissonium,    Typographum    Regium :     In 

1  Professor  H.  de  la'Ville'de  Mirmont  in  Chapter  V.—"  George  Buchanan  i 
Bordeaux,"  p.  36  note,  states  that  the  Municipal  Library  of  Bordeaux  possesses 
a  copy  of  the  edition  of  1543.  But  as  his  description  of  the  volume  corre- 
sponds exactly  with  the  1544  edition,  there  has  probably  been  a  misreading  of 
the  date  (M.D.  XLIIII.). 


170  The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan 

ofScina  Roberti  Stephani."  In  1618  it  was  included  in  the 
Homo  Diabolus  of  Caspar  Dornavius,  and  thereafter  took  its 
place  in  the  various  collected  editions  of  Buchanan's  poems. 
At  Tours,  in  1586,  Brisset,  sieur  de  Sauvage,  published  a 
French  translation  of  the  Baptistes  along  with  other  compositions 
of  a  kindred  nature.  Another,  by  Pierre  de  Brinon,  appeared 
at  Rouen  in  1613  and  was  reprinted  there  in  the  following 
year ;  while  as  late  as  1823  a  third  was  published  in 
Aignan's  Bihliofh^qne  efrangire.  An  undated  German  trans- 
lation by  A.  Lobwasser  also  exists,  as  well  as  a  Dutch 
translation  by  J.  de  Decker,  dated  1656.  Under  the 
title  of  Tyrannical-Government  anatomized:  or,  A  dis- 
course concerning  evU-conncillors,  an  English  translation 
of  the  Baptistes  was,  on  30th  January  1642,  ordered  by  the 
House  of  Commons  to  be  forthwith  printed  and  published. 
This  translation  was  afterwards  attributed  to  Milton,  and  was 
reprinted,  with  a  preface  and  notes,  by  Francis  Peck  in  his 
"  New  memoirs  of  the  life  and  poetical  works  of  Mr.  John 
Milton,"  London  1740.  Another  translation  (along  with  the 
Je.phthes)  by  Alexander  Gibb,  appeared  in  1870,  and  a  third  by 
the  Rev.  A.  Gordon  Mitchell  in  1904.  "  The  sacred  Dramas  of 
George  Buchanan,  translated  into  English  verse  by  Archibald 
Brown,  minister  of  the  parish  of  Legerwood "  (Edinburgh, 
James  Thin,  1906)  was  not  published  in  time  to  be  included  in 
the  exhibition. 

The  Jephthes  was  first  published  at  Paris  in  1554,  "  apud 
Guil.  Morelium,"  with  a  dedicatory  preface  by  the  author  dated 
28th  July  of  the  same  year.  It  was  reprinted  in  1557  by 
Vascosan  in  a  style  similar  to  his  edition  of  the  Alcestis.  In 
1575,  R.  Stephanus  published  it  along  with  the  Psalms  and  other 
poems.  A  French  translation  by  Claude  de  Vesel  figures  among 
the  books  printed  by  R.  Stephanus  in  1566.  Another  French 
translation,  by  Florent  Chrestien,  was  published  by  L.  Rabier, 
at  Orleans,  in  1567.  Reprints  of  this  translation  appeared  at 
Paris  in  1573,  1581,  1587,  and  1595.  Pierre  de  Brinon  also 
produced  a  French  translation  at  Rouen  in  1614.  German 
translations,  by  four  different  hands,  are  ascribed  to  1569,  1571, 
1595,  and  1604  ;  while  a  Polish  translation,  first  printed  in  1843, 
was  reprinted  in  1854  and  1855.  In  1750,  an  English  prose  trans- 
lation by  William  Tait,  schoolmaster  in  Drummelzier,  appeared 
at  Edinburgh  without  the  publisher's  name.     Mr  Gibb's  trans- 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  171 

lation,  as  already  noted,  appeared  in  1870,  and  a  further  trans- 
lation, by  the  Rev.  A.  Gordon  Mitchell  with  illustrations  by 
Miss  Jessie  M.  King,  was  published  in  1903.  A  very  neatly 
printed  edition  of  the  original  text  came  from  the  Poulis  press 
at  Glasgow  in  1775.  It  is  also  to  be  met  with  in  most  editions 
of  the  Poemata. 

In  the  dedication  of  his  Historia  to  King  James  the  Sixth, 
Buchanan  explains  that  on  his  return  to  his  native  country, 
after  twenty-four  years  of  wandering,  his  first  care  was  to 
gather  together  his  various  writings,  which  had  got  scattered 
and  mutilated  amid  the  troubles  of  bygone  days.  He  complains, 
too,  that  injudicious  friends  had  rushed  some  of  them 
immaturely  through  the  press,  while  others  had  suffered  at  the 
hands  of  copyists,  who,  assuming  the  role  of  censors,  had 
altered  and  even  vilely  corrupted  his  meaning.  His  plans 
were  all  upset,  he  says,  by  an  urgent  demand  from  many 
quarters  that  he  should  devote  his  time  to  writing  the  history 
of  his  nation.  But  he  had  made  some  progress  with  the  task 
to  which  he  had  first  set  himself,  and  he  speedily  became  known 
throughout  Europe  as  easily  the  chief  poet  of  his  age.  It  was 
just  before  coming  to  St.  Andrews  in  1566  to  take  up  his 
duties  as  Principal  of  St.  Leonard's  College  that  his  fame  as  a 
poet  began  to  spread.  In  that  year,  or  the  year  before,  the 
Paraphrasis  Psalmorura  was  first  printed  in  full ;  then  followed 
the  Franciscanus,  and  next  the  shorter  poems. 

The  most  popular  and  widely  read  of  all  Buchanan's  works 
was  undoubtedly  the  Paraphrasis  Psalmorum,  the  greater  part 
of  which  he  wrote  during  his  imprisonment  in  the  Convent  of 
San  Bento,  at  Lisbon,  in  1551-52.  For  more  than  two  centuries 
and  a  half  it  found  a  ready  sale  throughout  Europe,  and  edition 
after  edition  poured  from  the  printing  presses  of  Great  Britain 
and  the  Continent.  It  is  impossible  to  say,  with  any  close 
approach  to  accuracy,  how  many  editions  of  the  Paraphrasis 
have  been  published.  It  is  quite  evident  that  a  good  many  of 
the  editions  recorded  in  bibliographies  and  sale  catalogues  are  the 
result  of  typographical  or  other  errors,  as  they  cannot  be  found 
in  Libraries.  But  after  making  every  allowance,  there  cannot 
have  been  fewer  than  seventy  separate  editions  or  reprints,  and 
there  may  have  been  considerably  more.  At  first  the  task  of 
publisher  and  printer  was  clearly  to  supply  the  wants  of 
educated  people  who  took  pleasure  in  reading  Latin  poetry  for 


172  The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan 

its  own  sake.  As  time  went  on,  however,  and  as  Latin  became 
less  and  less  familiar  to  the  general  reader,  school  editions  began 
to  predominate.  This  is  specially  the  case  in  the  eighteenth 
century  and  in  the  first  quarter  of  the  nineteenth,  after  which 
the  publication  of  the  Paraphrasis  ceased.  Ruddiman's  text  of 
1715  formed  the  basis  of  all  the  school  editions  published  in 
this  country  (one  of  the  best  of  which  was  printed  at  Edinburgh 
in  1812);  but  an  earlier  edition  "in  usum  scolarum  recusa " 
had  appeared  at  Stendal  in  1710.'  The  Paraphrasis,  indeed, 
was  to  some  extent  used  as  a  school  book  even  in  Buchanan's  own 
lifetime,^  and  there  are  Scotsmen  still  living  who  owe  part  of 
their  training  in  Latin  to  the  study  of  that  work.  In  some 
grammar  schools  it  was  the  usual  lesson-book  for  Saturday,  in 
others  it  was  read  on  Monday.  Being  a  paraphrase  of  part  of 
an  inspired  volume,  it  was  permissible  to  the  pupils,  without 
fear  of  censure,  to  do  their  "  grinding"  on  Sunday.  But  the 
little  volumes,  bound  in  the  once  familiar  sheepskin,  have  long 
been  banished  from  the  schools,  and  no  new  edition  in  any  form 
has  been  called  for  for  more  than  three-quarters  of  a  century. 
It  was  in  1556  that  a  selection  of  eighteen  of  Buchanan's 
"  Psalms  "  first  left  the  press.  They  were  contained  in  a  small 
volume  bearing  the  title  "  Davidis  Psalmi  aliquot  Latino 
carmine  expressi  a  quatuor  illustribus  Poetis,  quos  quatuor 
regiones  Gallia,  Italia,  Germania,  Scotia  genuerunt :  in 
gratiam  studiosorum  poetices  inter  se  commissi  ab  Henrico 
Stephano,  cujus  etiam  nonnulli  Psalmi  Graeci  cum  aliis  Graecis 
itidem  comparatis  in  calce  libri  habentur."  From  the 
dedication  it  is  clear  that  Stephanus  was  alone  responsible  for 
the  publication  of  this  comparative  collection.  He  placed 
Buchanan's  versions  first  in  order  of  merit,  and  after  them  those 
of  Antonius  Plaminius,  an  Italian,  Salmon  Macrin,  a 
Frenchman,  Eobanus  Hessus,  a  German,  and  Rapicius  Jovita, 
also  an  Italian.  The  first  complete  edition  was  the  joint 
production  of  H.  and  R.  Stephanus.      It  is  without  date  and 

'  "Nullum  ego,"  says  Burman,  "si  ab  antiqiiioribus  deoesseris,  oelebrari 
unquam  audivi  aut  legi,  qui  cum  Buclianano  contendere  possit ;  aut  oujus 
facripta  tam  assidua  dootorum  virorum  manu  versata,  ot  etiam  in  publicis  et 
privatia  soholis  pueria  ot  adolesoentibus  edisoenda  fuerint  data." 

^  Chytraous,  writing  in  1584,  states  that  five  years  previously  it  had  been 
resolved  that  the  Paraphranit  should  bo  presnribed  for  the  first  class  in  the 
school  in  which  ho  taught  at  Rostook. 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  173 

the  exact  year  of  its  publication  has  not  been  ascertained 
definitely.  The  probability  seems  to  be  that  it  was  issued  in 
1565,  or  in  the  early  part  of  1566.  It  is  a  well-printed  octavo 
volume,  bearing  the  title :  ' '  Psalmorum  Dauidis  paraphrasis 
poetica,  nunc  primum  edita,  authore  Georgio  Buchanano, 
Scoto,  poetarum  nostri  saeculi  facile  principe.  Eiusdem 
Dauidis  Psalmi  aliquot  a  Th[eodoro]  B[eza]  V[ezelio]  versi. 
Fsalmi  aliquot  in  versus  item  Graecos  nuper  a  diuersis  translati. 
Apud  Henricum  Stephanum,  et  eius  fratrem  Robertum 
Stephanum,  typographum  Regium.  Ex  privilegio  regis."  The 
Greek  versions  form  an  appendix  of  46  pages,  with  a  separate 
pagination.  This  "  editio  princeps  "  was  followed  in  1566  by 
an  edition  in  16mo  from  the  same  press,  in  which  the  Jephthes 
was  included  and  the  Greek  versions  omitted.  The  first  edition 
was  reprinted,  also  in  1566,  at  Strassburg,  by  Josias 
Rihelius ;  and  in  the  same  year  another  edition,  including  the 
Jephthes,  was  issued  at  Antwerp  "  ex  officina  Christophori 
Plantini  " — making  four  distinct  editions  within  a  period  of 
perhaps  from  twelve  to  eighteen  months.  Plantin's  edition  was 
reprinted  in  1567  with  the  Greek  versions  added.  Other 
editions  came  from  the  same  press  in  1571  and  1582.  In  1575 
R.  Stephanus  reprinted  the  Paraphrasis  and  Jephthes,  and  in 
that  year  H.  Stephanus  likewise  brought  out  the  "Psalmorum 
Davidis  aliquot  metaphrasis  Graeca,  Joannis  Serrani,"  to  which 
the  Latin  paraphrase  of  Buchanan  is  subjoined.  Another 
edition,  "  omnia  multo  quam  antehac  emendatoria,"  was 
printed  by  R.  Stephanus  in  1580,  and  seems  to  have  been  the 
last  issued  from  that  famous  press.  Other  sixteenth  century 
editions  were  produced  at  Strassburg  in  1568  and  1572,  London 
in  1580,  Morges  in  1581,  Frankfort  in  1585, ^  Herborn  in  1590, 
1595  and  1600,  Geneva  in  1593  and  1594,  and  Leyden  in  1595. 
Subsequent  editions  are  too  numerous  to  be  mentioned  here 
in  detail.  It  must  sufiice  to  say  that  in  the  exhibition  were 
included  editions  printed  at  Paris  in  1646  (selections) ;  Leyden 
1609  and  1621;  Frankfort  in  1605;  Herborn  in  1616,  1619, 
1637,  1646,  1656,  and  1664;   Stendal  in  1710;   London  in  1620, 

1  In  this  edition,  as  well  as  in  all  those  printed  at  Herborn  and  some 
others,  the  Psalms  are  set  to  music,  and  are  accompanied  by  arguments  and 
scholia  from  the  pen  of  Nathan  Chytraeus.  On  the  advice  of  the  printer,  the 
scholia  were  issued  in  a  separate  booklet,  but  it  is  usually  bound  up  with  the 
text.    The  music  was  composed  or  adapted  by  Statius  Olthovius  of  Osnabriiok. 


174  The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan 

1648,  1660,  and  1742;  Edinburgh  in  1699,  1716,  1725,  1730, 
1737  (the  most  comprehensively  annotated  edition),  1772 
(with  Waddel's  prose  translation),  1812,  1815,  1816 
(Waddel's  translation  only),  and  1825  ;  Glasgow  in  1750,  1765, 
1790,  1797  (with  and  without  Waddel's  translation),  and  1836 
(John  Eadie's  verse  translation). 

It  will  be  noticed  that  Scotland  was  somewhat  late  in  taking 
up  the  printing  of  the  I'araphrasis.  Renouard  asserts  that  a 
re-impression  of  the  Paris  edition  was  published  at  Edinburgh 
in  1566,  with  many  corrections  by  Buchanan  himself.  This,  of 
course,  is  a  mistake,  arising  from  a  misreading  of  Buchanan's 
letter  to  Peter  Daniel,  dated  at  Edinburgh  24th  July  1566. 
Three  editions  are  attributed  to  Andrew  Hart,  viz.,  1611,  1615, 
and  1621.  According  to  the  British  Museum  Catalogue,  the 
1621  edition  is  a  reprint  of  the  London  edition  of  1592,  of 
which  an  earlier  edition  is  said  to  have  appeared  in  1590.  The 
1615  edition,  as  issued  along  with  Buchanan's  poetical  works, 
may  have  been  printed  in  Edinburgh,  but  it  has  all  the  appear- 
ance of  having  been  imported  from  Holland.  The  1611  edition 
has  been  described  as  "  very  scarce,"  and  a  copy  could  not  be 
got  for  exhibition.  Another  seventeenth  century  Scotch  edition 
that  could  not  be  found  is  said  to  have  been  printed  at  Aberdeen 
by  John  Forbes,  younger,  in  1672.  The  sole  authority  for  its 
existence — a  sale  catalogue  of  1842 — is  a  very  unreliable  one. 

There  has  always  been  some  uncertainty  as  to  when  the 
Fmnciscanus  was  first  published.  The  dedicatory  letter  to  the 
Earl  of  Moray,  written  at  St.  Andrews  on  5th  June  1564, 
fixes  the  time  at  which  it  had  been  completed  by  the  author  for 
the  press.  But  this  letter  did  not  appear  in  print  until  1711,' 
and  it  was  not  prefixed  to  the  poem  itself  until  Ruddiman  did 
so  in  his  edition  of  the  Opera  Omnia  of  1715.  In  an  address 
to  the  reader  of  the  Letters  he  says :  ' '  Ne  quis  autem  Geo. 
Buchanani  ad  Moraviae  Comitem  Epistolam,  quae  in  Edit. 
Lond.  quarta  occurrit,  incuria  nostra  intercidisse  caussari 
possit,  monendus  est  earn  suo  loco  ante  Frauciscanum  (cujus 
nuncupatoria  est)  esse  repositam."  Dr.  David  Murray,  of 
Glasgow,  is  the  owuer  of  an  extremely  rare  pamphlet  of 
56    unnumbered    octavo    pages    entitled    "  Georgii    Buchanani 

'  In  "(jleorgii  Buchanani  Sooti  ad  vivos  sui  seculi  olaiissimos,  eorumque 
ad  eundem,  Epiatolae.  Ex  MSS.  acourata  desoiiptae,  nunc  primum  in  luoera 
editao."     Londini,  iiupenais  D.  Brown  et  Gul.  Taylor. 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  175 

Scoti,  Franciscanus.  Varia  eiusdem  authoris  poemata. 
M.D.LXVi."  There  is  no  mention  of  place  or  printer,  but  it  is 
bound  up  with  another  pamphlet  of  46  numbered  pages  con- 
taining the  "  Psalmi  aliquot  in  versus  Graecos  nuper  a 
diuersis  translati,"  which  accompanies  and  forms  part  of 
the  first  edition  of  Buchanan's  Paraphrasis  Psalmoruin.  The 
two  pamphlets  are  quite  uniform  in  size  and  style,  and  are 
evidently  from  the  same  press.  There  is  thus  every  reason  to 
believe  that  this  is  the  first  edition  of  the  Franciscanus,  and 
that  it  was  printed  by  H.  or  R.  Stephanus,  although  its  title 
is  not  to  be  met  with  in  the  "  Annales  de  I'imprimerie  des 
Estienne  "  of  Renouard.  Prefixed  to  the  Franciscanus  is  the 
Somnium,  and  appended  are  twenty-five  F pigrammata  and  the 
first  Palinodia.  The  last  page  contains  "  Ad  vanam  super- 
stitionem  G.  C.  lurecons.  Apostrophe,"  and  "  Patricii 
Adamsoni  Scoti  de  Buch.  carmen."  A  French  translation  by 
Florent  Chrestien  was  published  by  Nicolas  de  Mergey,  at 
Sedan,  in  1599,  under  the  title  of  ''  Le  Cordelier,  ou  Le  Sainct 
Francois."  The  volume  also  contains  the  Songe,  the  Palinodie, 
and  various  other  pieces.^  An  English  translation,  by  George 
Provand,  appeared  at  Glasgow  in  1809,  and  another,  by 
Alexander  Gibb,  at  Edinburgh,  in  1871. 

An  edition  of  the  Elegiac,  Silvae,  and  liendecasyllahi  was 
printed  by  R.  Stephanus  at  Paris  in  1567,  with  a  dedication  to 
Peter  Daniel,  dated  at  Edinburgh  24th  July  1566.  It  was  re- 
issued, with  the  addition  of  the  Baptistes,  in  1579,  "apud  Mamer- 
tum  Patissonium."  Meanwhile,  in  1569,  H.  Stephanus  had 
printed  a  selection  of  Buchanan's  poems,  including  the  Francis- 
canus, Elegiac,  Silvae,  etc.,  as  a  companion  volume  to  the  second 
edition  of  Beza's  poems.  A  larger  collection,  comprising  the 
Franciscanus  and  Fratres,  the  Elegiac,  Silvae,  Odae,  Medea, 
Alcestis,  and  Jephthes  followed  from  the  press  of  Thomas 
Guarinus  Nervius  at  Basel,  in  or  about  1568,  in  a  well  printed 
volume  containing  also  the  poems  of  various  other  writers. 
Another  collection  containing,  in  addition,  the  Epigrammata  and 
a  fragment  of  the  Sphaera,  but  omitting  the  plays,  appeared  with- 
out place  or  publisher,  but  apparently  at  Heidelberg,  in  1584. 
Ten  years  later  these  pieces  were  re-issued,  along  with  the  five 
books  of  the  Sphaera;    and  in   1597   a  second  part  followed, 

'  Brunet  and  La  Ville  de  Mirmont  mention  an  earlier  edition,  Geneva 
1567. 


176  The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan 

"  apud  Petrum  Sanctandreanum,"  containing  the  "  Tragoediae 
sacrae  et  exterae."  Both  parts  were  republished  in  1609  "in 
Bibliopolio  Commeliniano,"  at  Heidelberg. 

During  the  seventeenth  century,  collected  editions  of 
Buchanan's  Poeniata  were  issued  from  various  presses  in  neat 
little  pocket  volumes,  printed  in  very  small  type.  The  first  of 
these  bears  the  imprint  of  Andrew  Hart,  Edinburgh,  and  is 
dated  1615.  It  is  made  up  in  two  sections,  the  one  containing 
the  Franciscanus,  Elegiae,  Sphaera,  etc.,  and  the  other  the 
Paraphrasis  Psalmorum,  Jephthes  and  Baptistes.  The  editor  is 
said  to  have  been  John  Ray,  first  Professor  of  Humanity  in 
the  University  of  Edinburgh.  Other  editions,  differently  made 
up  and  containing  the  Alccstis  and  Medea  as  well,  were 
published  in  the  following  order: — 1621  (Saumur,  CI. 
Girard  and  others,  and  Leyden,  Abraham  Elzevir) ;  1628 
(Leyden,  Elzevir)  ;  1641  (Amsterdam,  Jansson) ;  1665  (Amster- 
dam, Waesberge) ;  1676  (Amsterdam,  Daniel  Elzevir); 
1677  (Edinburgh,  John  Cairns) ;  1687  (Amsterdam,  Henry 
Wetsten.)  An  edition  on  a  larger  page  and  in  more 
readable  type  was  published  at  London  by  B.  Griffin  in  "The 
Old  Baily "  in  1686,  and  remains  the  best  collection  of 
Buchanan's  poetical  works  in  an  easily  read  and  handy  form. 

The  Sphaera,  in  a  separate  form  ("  quinque  libris  descripta: 
nunc  primum  e  tenebris  eruta  et  luce  donata ")  was  first 
published  at  Herborn  in  1586,  by  Christopher  Corvin,  with  a 
dedicatory  epistle  by  Robert  Howie,  afterwards  Principal  of 
St.  Mary's  College,  St.  Andrews,  at  the  time  a  student  at 
Herborn.  In  the  following  year  another  edition  was  put  forth 
by  the  same  publisher,  with  supplements  to  books  IV.  and  V. 
by  John  Pincier. 

The  poem  addressed  to  Henry  II.  of  France  "  post  victos 
Caletes "  came  from  the  press  of  R.  Stephanus,  at  Paris,  in 
1558,  in  a  tract  of  eight  pages  (whereof  two  are  blank)  entitled 
De  C'aleto  nuper  ah  Ilciirko  11.  Fniiiroriivi  rege  iiirictiss. 
recepta,  Geuryii  Buchanani  Ctiriiien.  Four  lines  were,  how- 
ever, subsequently  added.  An  English  version  of  this  poem 
may  be  read  among  the  "  Reliques  of  Father  Prout,"  in  Bohn's 
Illustrated  Library. 

An  English  version  of  the  Epithalamium,  along  with  the 
Latin  text  was  published  by  Archdeacon  Wrangham,  in  1837, 
in  his  "  Epithalamia  tria  Mariana";    and  in  1845  an  edition, 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  177 

restricted  to  61  copies,  of  an  older  anonymous  translation, 
dating  from  about  1711,  was  printed  at  Edinburgh  from  the 
scarce  copy  preserved  in  a  volume  of  pamphlets  in  the 
Advocates'  Library.  Another  translation,  by  George  Provand, 
had  been  published  in  1809,  along  with  the  Franciscanus.  The 
text  of  this  Marriage  Ode  was  included  in  the  Silvae  printed  in 
1567,  and  occurs  in  many  subsequent  editions  of  Buchanan's 
poems. 

"  The  Stoic  King,  from  Seneca;  by  Buchanan:  to  which  is 
added  his  Dedication  of  the  Latin  Paraphrase  of  the  Psalms 
to  Mary  Queen  of  Scots.  Translated  into  English  verse:  with 
notes "  is  the  title  of  a  sixteen  page  pamphlet  printed  at 
Edinburgh  in  1807.  The  Sex  Stoicus  ex  Seneca  is  usually 
appended  to  the  Be  Jure  Begni. 

The  Silvae  and  the  Hymnus  Matutinus  ad  Christum,  trans- 
lated into  English  verse  by  J.  Longmuir,  LL.D.,  Aberdeen,  was 
published  at  Edinburgh  in  1871  in  a  pamphlet  of  48  pages. 

Attention  may  also  be  drawn  to  the  verse  translations,  with 
explanatory  notes,  of  the  Fratres  Fraterrimi,  Epigrammata,  and 
Miscellanea,  by  Robert  Monteith,  M.A.,  printed  at  Edinburgh 
for  the  heirs  of  Andrew  Anderson,  in  1708,  although  the 
translator  warns  the  reader  that  "  Buchanan's  Learn'd 
and  Witty  Jests,  by  way  of  this  translation,  suffer 
much  Decay."  Translations  of  a  number  of  Buchanan's 
single  poems  and  epigrams  lie  hid  in  old  magazines 
and  other  out  of  the  way  places.  Some  of  these  are  good,  and 
might  be  worth  reprinting ;  but,  in  the  words  of  Dr.  Robert 
Chambers,  written  more  than  seventy  years  ago,  "it  is  an 
honour  yet  awaiting  some  future  scholar,  to  give  to  his  un- 
lettered countrymen  to  feel  somewhat  of  the  grace  and  strength 
that  characterize  the  performances  of  George  Buchanan." 

In  1571  Ane  Admonitioun  direct  to  the  trew  Lordis 
appeared  in  three  separate  editions.  Two  of  them  were  printed 
by  Robert  Lekprevik  at  Stirling.  The  third  was  "  imprinted 
at  London  by  lohn  Daye,  accordyng  to  the  Scotish  copie  printed 
at  Striuilyng  by  Robert  Lekpreuik " ;  but  it  may  have  come 
second  in  point  of  time,  being  reprinted  from  Lekprevik's  first 
edition.  Leprevik's  second  edition,  besides  minor  variations, 
introduces  a  new  paragraph  of  ten  lines  on  page  13.  In  the 
Advocates'  Library  copy  (which  was  shown  at  the  exhibition) 
some  one  has  written,  in  an  eighteenth  century  hand,   "  This 

N 


178  The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan 

last  §  is  not  in  the  next  following  copy,  which  seems  to  have 
been  a  former  edition,  nor  in  the  MS.  1570,  Cotton's  Library." 
Another  note  by  the  same  hand,  referring  to  a  statement  on  page 
30,  says,  ' '  Hence  it  is  evident  this  libel  has  been  written 
before  the  English  army  entered  Scotland,  which  was  about  the 
middle  of  May  1570."  Lowndes  mentions  a  St.  Andrews 
edition  of  1572,  but  it  has  not  been  traced.  The  Admonitioun 
was  reprinted  in  1745  and  again  in  1808,  in  the  third  volume  of 
the  "  Harleian  Miscellany."  A  reprint  of  Lekprevik's  second 
edition  forms  Appendix  II.  of  Irving's  "  Memoirs  of  Buchanan," 
1817.  The  same  issue  is  included  in  the  "  Works  of  Mr  George 
Buchanan  in  the  Scottish  language,"  published  at  Edinburgh 
in  1823.  The  most  recent  edition  is  that  contained  in  the 
"  Vernacular  Writings  of  George  Buchanan,"  edited,  from  an 
early  manuscript,  for  the  Scottish  Text  Society,  by  Professor 
Hume  Brown  in  1892.  The  Admonitioun  was  actually  printed 
for  Ruddiman's  edition  of  Buchanan's  Works,  and  was  intended 
to  occupy  the  first  ten  pages  of  the  sheets  allotted  to  it  and  the 
Chamaeleon.  But  from  some  prudential  considerations  on  the 
part  of  the  editor  or  publisher,  it  was  afterwards  suppressed.' 
Copies  containing  it  are,  however,  frequently  to  be  met  with, 
printed  in  smaller  type  in  double  columns,  and  filling,  with  an 
"  Advertisement,"  only  six  pages.  The  Admonitioun  was  not 
included  in  Burman's  edition  of  the  Works. 

About  the  same  period  (1570),  Buchanan  wrote  "  The 
Chamaeleon,  or,  the  crafty  statesman :  described  in  the 
character  of  Mr.  Maitland  of  Lethington,  Secretary  of 
Scotland,"  and  the  printing  of  it  is  said  to  have  been  begun  by 
Lekprevik  in  April  1571.  It  was,  however,  successfully 
stopped  by  Maitland,  and  the  pamphlet  was  made  public  for 
the  first  time  at  London  in  1710  in  a  volume  known  as 
"Miscellanea  Antiqua "  in  England  and  as  "Miscellanea 
Scotica  "  in  Scotland.  The  editor  remarks,  "The  Chamaeleon 
was  written  originally  in  English,  we  have  chang'd  nothing, 
save  the  old  spellings,  and  some  obsolete  words."  It  was 
printed  from  the  manuscript  in  the  Cotton  Library  in  the 
Opera  Omnia,  1715  and  1725,  and  in  the  second  volume  of 
another  "Miscellanea  Scotica"  published  at  Glasgow  in  1818. 
Other  re-prints  will  be  found  in  Irving's  "  Memoirs,"  1817, 
Appendix  IT.  2;    in  the  "Works  of  Buchanan  in  the  Scottish 

'  See  note  on  p.  164  of  Irving's  Afemoirs  of  Buchanan,  1817. 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  179 

language,"  1823  ;  in  Aikman's  translation  of  the  Historia,  vol.  1, 
1827;  and  in  the  "  Vernacular  Writings"  of  Buchanan,  1892. 
In  1741  appeared  the  "Chameleon  redivivus :  or,  Nathaniel's 
character   revers'd.      A   satire     .  .     against   the   Laird   of 

Lidingtone.  .  .  .  Reprinted,  and  most  humbly  inscribed  to  a 
learned  C[ler]k  of  the  T[eind]  C[ourt]  of  E[dinburgh]." 

A  third  piece  written  by  Buchanan  in  the  Scottish 
vernacular  was  his  Opinion  anent  the  Reformation  of  the 
Vniversitie  of  St.  Andros.  It  was  first  published  as 
Appendix  III.  to  Irving's  "  Memoirs  of  Buchanan,"  1817.  It 
was  re-edited  for  the  Bannatyne  Club  and  printed  in  the 
second  volume  of  its  "Miscellany"  in  1836.  A  third  and 
much  more  carefully  supervised  edition  will  be  found  in  the 
"  Vernacular  Writings"  published  by  the  Scottish  Text  Society 
in  1892.  Although  printed  from  the  same  original  manuscript, 
this  edition  differs  very  much  in  spelling  from  Irving's,  and 
the  text  is  also  somewhat  different. 

Buchanan's  famous  Detectio  was  first  issued  to  the  world  in 
a  little  volume  bearing  a  title  beginning  "  De  Maria  Scotorum 
Regina."  Accompanying  it  was  a  tract  of  greater  length,  by 
another  hand,  entitled  "  Actio  contra  Mariam  Scotorum 
Reginam  " ;  and  appended  were  three  letters  written  by  the 
Queen  to  Both  well,  about  which  much  has  since  been  heard. 
The  volume  bore  no  date,  and  place  and  publisher  were  likewise 
withheld ,'  but  it  is  known  to  have  been  printed  in  1571  by 
John  Daye,  of  London.  The  book  has  sometimes  been  dated 
1572,  and  as  slight  variations  are  observable  in  the  typography, 
it  is  just  possible  that  there  may  have  been  a  re-issue  in  that 
year.  In  1571  there  was  also  issued  (without  imprint),  from 
the  same  press  as  the  Latin  edition,  an  English  translation 
under  the  title  of  "  Ane  Detectioun  of  the  duinges  of  Marie 
Queue  of  Scottes,  touchand  the  murder  of  hir  husband,  and  hir 
conspiracie,  adulterie,  and  pretensed  mariage  with  the  Erie 
Bothwell.  And  ane  defence  of  the  trew  Lordis,  mainteineris  of 
the  kingis  graces  actioun  and  authoritie.  Translated  out  of  the 
Latine  quhilke  was  written  by  G.  B."  Of  this  translation  there 
were  two  issues,  the  earlier  of  which  is  recognisable  by  the 
misplacement  of  the  initial  letter  of  the  word  "  actioun,"  which 
had  been  accidentally  dropped  and  inserted  in  the  word 
"  authoritie,"  making  it  read  "  authaoritie."  There  is  no 
alteration    in    the'  text    of    the    volume.      In    1572    a    Scotch 


180  The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan 

edition  of  the  Betectio  was  "  imprentit  at  Sanctandrois  be 
Robert  Lekpreuik."  This  was  followed  in  1572-3  by  a 
French  translation,  "  Histoire  de  Marie  Royne  d'Escosse," 
ascribed  to  "  a  Huguenot  avocat  of  Rochelle,  named  Cumez."' 
It  was  in  all  probability  published  in  France  although  it  bears 
to  have  been  published  in  Edinburgh,  and  has  the  following 
colophon :  ' '  Acheue  d'imprimer  a  Edimbourg,  ville  capitalle 
d'Escosse,  le  13.  de  Feurier,  1572.  Par  moy  Thomas  Waltem." 
As  the  ' '  Histoire  tragique  de  Marie  Royne  d'Escosse  "  it  again 
appeared  in  the  "  Memoires  de  I'estat  de  France  sous  Charles 
IX.,"  torn.  1,  1579.  An  edition  of  the  Detectio,  "translated 
into  Scotch,  and  now  made  English,"  was  printed,  without 
place,  in  1651,  and  again  at  London  in  1689.  It  is  the  first 
item  in  an  Appendix  to  Buchanan's  History  of  Scotland, 
published  at  London  in  1721,  and  it  was  once  more  reproduced, 
from  the  copy  printed  at  St.  Andrews,  in  Anderson's 
"  Collections  relating  to  the  History  of  Mary  Queen  of 
Scotland,"  vol.  2,  1727.  The  Detectio,  in  Latin  and  French, 
as  well  as  the  "Actio,"  are  further  accessible  in  Jebb's  "Autores 
Sedecim,"  vol.  1,  London,  1725.  In  connection  with  the 
Detectio,  mention  may  be  made  of  "  The  copie  of  a  letter, 
written  by  one  in  London  to  his  frend,  concernyng  the  credit 
of  the  late  published  Detection  of  the  doynges  of  the  Ladie 
Marie  of  Scotland.  Without  date,  black  letter,  12mo, 
containing  fourteen  pages ;  and,  by  some,  thought  to  have  been 
written  by  the  learned  Buchanan,"  printed  in  Anderson's  Col- 
lections, vol.  2,  1727,  in  the  Harleian  Miscellany,  vol.  3,  London 
1745,  and  in  Sommers's  Tracts,  vol.  14,  London,  1751,  as  well 
as  in  the  later  editions  of  these  latter  collections.  A  copy  of  the 
original  edition  (ca.  1571),  belonging  to  the  Advocates'  Library, 
containing  sixteen  pages,  inclusive  of  the  title-page,  was 
exhibited  at  St.  Andrews. 

The  De  Prosodia  LibeUus,  which  Buchanan  drew  up  as  part 
of  a  new  Latin  manual  for  use  in  Scottish  schools,  has  been 
frequently  reprinted,  usually  as  an  appendix  to  the  grammar 
of  Despauterius.  The  following  editions  were  included  in  the 
exhibition: — [1595],  Edinburgh,  Robert  Waldegrave :  1621, 
Edinburgh,  Andrew  Hart;  1660,  Edinburgh,  Society  of 
Stationers;    1667,  Glasgow,  Robert  Sanders;    1689,  Edinburgh, 

1  T.  F.  HenderHon,  "  The  (""asUet  I,ot,ters,"  1S89,  p.  48. 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  181 

Society  of  Booksellers;    1694  and   1708,   Edinburgh,   Heirs  of 
Andrew  Anderson. 

Buchanan's  celebrated  political  dialogue  Be  Jure  Eegni  apud 
Scotos  first  saw  the  light  in  1579   at  Edinburgh,   but  it  had 
been    written    about    ten    years    before,    not    unlikely    at    St. 
Andrews  while  he  was  still  Principal  of  St.  Leonard's  College. 
The  dedication  to  the  King  is  dated  at  Stirling,  10th  January 
1579.    There  would  appear  to  have  been  two  issues  of  the  book^ 
one  bearing  the  imprint  ' '  Edinburgi,  apud  lohannem  Rosseum, 
pro  Henrico  Charteris  Anno  Do.  1579,  cum  privilegio  regali  " ; 
and  the  other  "  Anno  Do.  1579,"  without  printer,  publisher,  or 
place.       An  "  editio  secunda  "  followed  in  1580,  "  ad  exemplar 
loannis    Rossei    Edinburgi,    cum    privilegio    Scotorum    Regis," 
and  was  probably  printed  abroad.       In  the  same  year  Ross's 
edition  seems  to  have  been  re-issued  with  a  new  title,  while  an 
"  editio  tertia  "  is  dated  Edinburgh  1581.   In  1610,  it  was  trans- 
lated into  Dutch  by  Ellert  de  Veer,  and  published  at  Amster- 
dam by  Pieter  Pieterszoon  in  black  letter,  with  a  lengthy  pre- 
face by  the  translator.     In   1654  the  Latin  text  was  inserted 
in  part  V.  of  the  Theatrum  orbis  Terrarum  published  at  Am- 
sterdam by  John  Blaeu,  along  with  a  short  description  of  Scot- 
land extracted  from  Book  I.  of  the  Historia.     The  text  was  also 
printed  by  Robert  Urie  at  Glasgow  in  1750,  and  it  was  ap- 
pended to  all  the  Latin  editions  of  the  Historia  from  1583  to 
1762.     The  first  English  translation  was  "printed  in  the  year 
1680."     The  name  of  place  and  publisher  are  withheld,  and  the 
translator  (who  defends  his  craftsmanship  in  an  address  to  the 
reader)  shelters  himself  behind  the  pseudonym   "  Philalethes." 
This  translation  was  re-issued  at  London  in  1689  by  Richard 
Baldwin.     A  new  translation  was  made  by  Robert  Macfarlan 
and  published  at  London  in  1799,  together  with  two  disserta- 
tions, one  archseological  and  the  other  historical.     Macfarlan's 
translation    was   re-printed    in    conjunction    with    Rutherford's 
Lex     Bex,     in    the     third     volume     of     the     "  Presbyterian's 
Armoury,"    Edinburgh    1843-46.     In    "  Fiirst   und   Volk   nach 
Buchanan's  und  Milton's  Lehre,"  a  German  translation  of  the 
Dialogue  was  published  at  Aarau  in  1821. 

The  last,  and  most  voluminous,  of  Buchanan's  writings  was 
his  Rerum  Scoticarum  Historia,  which  must  have  occupied 
his  leisure  hours  for  many  years.  It  was  first  published  in  one 
folio  volume  by  Alexander  Arbuthnot,  at  Edinburgh,  in  1582, 


182  The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan 

shortly  after  the  author's  death.  Next  year  it  was  reprinted, 
also  in  folio,  on  the  Continent,  probably  at  Geneva,  "ad  exem- 
plar Alexandri  Arbuthneti  editum  Edimburgi."  Other  Con- 
tinental editions,  in  octavo,  followed — at  Frankfort  in  1584, 
1594,  and  1624;  Amsterdam  in  1643,  and  Utrecht  in  1668  and 
1697.  An  "  editio  novissima  "  appeared  at  Edinburgh  (Mosman) 
in  1700,  and  Paton  re-issued  Ruddiman's  text  there  in  1727. 
The  latest  edition  seems  to  be  that  edited  by  James  Man,  on 
the  basis  of  the  first  edition,  with  numerous  useful  notes  in 
English,  printed  at  Aberdeen  by  James  Chalmers  in  1762. 
According  to  Irving  ("  Memoirs,"  p.  282)  "  of  the  History  of 
Scotland  there  are  seventeen  editions."  This  looks  like  an 
exaggeration,  as  it  has  been  found  impossible  to  trace  more  than 
a  dozen  with  certainty,  and  some  of  these  are  unaltered  reprints. 

An  edition  of  the  Uistoria  ' '  faithfully  rendered  into  English  " 
by  an  unknown  hand  was  published  at  London  in  1690,  in  foUo. 
Of  this  version  seven  editions  followed,  more  or  less  revised  and 
corrected  by  William  Bond,  each  in  two  volumes,  octavo,  viz., 
London,  1722  and  1733,  Edinburgh,  1751-52,  1762,  and  1766, 
and  Glasgow  1799.  A  new  translation,  with  a  continuation,  by 
James  Aikman,  was  commenced  at  Glasgow,  1827,  and  finished 
at  Edinburgh  in  1829,  in  six  volumes,  octavo.  Buchanan's 
Historia  occupies  the  first  two  volumes  only.  This  edition  was  re- 
issued at  Edinburgh,  Glasgow  and  London  more  than  once.  Still 
another  translation,  also  with  a  continuation,  by  John  Watkins, 
LL.D.,  was  published  at  London  in  1827  and  again  in  1843. 
Most  of  these  English  editions  contain  portraits  of  the  author 
besides  maps  and  other  illustrations.  Translations  into  Scotch 
and  French  remain  unprinted.  In  1705,  under  the  title 
of  "  An  impartial  account  of  the  affairs  of  Scotland 
written  by  an  eminent  hand,"  a  portion  of  Buchanan's  History 
was  published  anonymously  at  London  as  an  original  work.  It 
extends  ' '  from  the  death  of  James  the  Fifth  to  the  tragical  exit 
of  the  Earl  of  Murray,  Regent  of  Scotland." 

Within  two  years  of  his  death  (that  is  to  say  about  1580) 
Buchanan  is  reputed  to  have  written,  at  the  urgent  request  of 
friends,  a  short  autobiography  giving  a  condensed  account  of  his 
life  from  his  birth  to  his  final  return  to  Scotland.  The  authen- 
ticity of  this  Vita,  as  it  is  usually  called,  has  frequently  been 
impugned ;  and  although  there  is  a  general  consensus  of  opinion 
in  favour  of  its  being  the  work  of  Buchanan  himself,  there  is 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  183 

still  an  element  of  doubt  in  the  matter.  None  of  Buchanan's 
editors  has  really  grappled  with  the  question,  and  his  bio- 
graphers have  been  equally  supine.  George  Chalmers  boldly 
rejected  Buchanan's  authorship  of  the  Vita,  having  convinced 
himself  that  the  real  author  was  Sir  Peter  Young.'  Professor 
Hume  Brown  has  declared  the  objections  formulated  by 
Chalmers  to  be  groundless;^  and  there  the  controversy  may  be 
said  to  rest.  Perhaps  all  that  can  now  be  affirmed  with 
certainty  is  that  if  Buchanan  did  not  write  the  Vita  himself  he 
dictated  it  to  another ;  for  it  contains  information  regarding  his 
life  abroad  that  could  not  possibly  have  been  given  with  such 
precision  by  any  of  his  Scottish  contemporaries. 

A  good  deal  has  been  made  of  the  defective  chronology  of  the 
Vita  and  especially  of  the  statement  it  sometimes  contains  that 
Buchanan  was  appointed  tutor  to  King  James  a  year  before  his 
royal  pupil  was  born.  Ruddiman  was  much  puzzled  by  this 
sentence  and  tried  to  explain  it  in  different  ways.  Such  aber- 
rations may,  however,  be  due,  in  part  at  least,  to  defective  edit- 
ing. In  point  of  fact  the  text  of  the  Vita  has  never  been  criti- 
cally edited;  and,  such  as  it  is,  it  has  not  even  been  quite  fairly 
placed  before  the  modern  reader.  It  is  impossible  to  go  into  the 
whole  subject  here,  but  a  few  relevant  facts  may  be  pointed  out. 
The  earliest  edition  mentioned  by  Ruddiman  is  1608,  but  he  had 
not  seen  it  himself  and  he  does  not  specifically  refer  to  another 
with  the  exception  of  Sir  Robert  Sibbald's,  of  1702,  merely 
remarking  that  the  Vita  is  to  be  found  in  many  editions  of  the 
Poemata.  He  does  not  seem  to  have  noticed  that  during  the 
greater  part  of  the  seventeenth  century  two  distinct  versions  of 
the  Vita  had  been  appearing  concurrently.  The  difference 
between  them  is  certainly  not  great,  but  it  is  sufficient  to  suggest 
that  the  one  was  not  copied  directly  from  the  other.  So  far  as 
can  be  ascertained  at  present  the  one  version  was  published  for 
the  first  time  at  Herborn  in  1613,  and  the  other  at  Edinburgh 
in  1615.  There  may  have  been  earlier  editions  of  both,  but  if 
so  they  have  still  to  be  discovered.  When,  towards  the  end  of 
1584  ,  Nathan  Chytraeus  was  preparing  for  the  press  the 
' '  Collectanea  "  or  "  Scholia  "  to  his  school  edition  of  the  Para- 
phrasis  Psalinorum  he  deemed  it  necessary  to  say  something 
about  the  author.     So,  under  the  heading  of  "  De  paraphraste 

'  Life  of  Thomas  Ruddiman,  London,  1794,  p.  68. 

^  George  Buchanan,  humanist  and  reformer,  Edin.,  1890,  p.  369. 


184  The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan 

ipso,"  he  gave  such  particulars  of  Buchanan's  life  as  he  could 
glean  from  the  Historia  and  from  the  prefaces  to  his  poetical 
and  other  works.  In  the  edition  of  1590  he  added  the  story  of 
Buchanan's  manner  of  rebuking  King  James  for  signing  docu- 
ments without  reading  them.  Chytraeus  was  the  first  to  publish 
this  story,  which  had  reached  him  in  a  roundabout  way  from 
Johannes  Metellus,  who  had  heard  it  from  the  lips  of  a  nephew 
of  Buchanan.  These  biographical  notes  remained  unaltered  in 
the  editions  of  1595  and  1600,  so  that  Chytraeus,  who  died  on 
25th  February,  1598,  had  evidently  never  seen  the  Vita.  In 
the  edition  of  1613,  however,  and  probably  in  an  intervening 
one,  the  Vita  takes  the  place  of  what  Chytraeus  had  written. 
It  is  unlikely  that  the  first  edition  of  the  Vita  should  have  been 
printed  at  Herborn,  and  further  investigation  may  yet  reveal  an 
earlier  one.  The  next  known  edition  is  that  prefixed  to  the 
Poemaia  published  by  Andrew  Hart  at  Edinburgh  in  1615.  This 
is  the  more  accurate  text  of  the  two,  and  is  clearly  not  a  reprint 
of  the  Herborn  one.  The  heading  of  the  Herborn  text  is  simply 
"  Georgii  Buchanani  Vita."  The  words  "  ab  ipso  scripta  biennio 
ante  mortem  "  have  been  added  in  the  Edinburgh  one.  But 
while  the  Edinburgh  text  merely  adds  at  the  end  "  Obiit  Edin- 
burgi  vigesimo  octavo  Septembris,  anno  salutis  1582,"  the 
Herborn  one  gives  this  more  detailed  information :  "  Haec  de  se 
Buchananus,  amicorum  rogatu.  Obiit  Edinburgi,  paulo  post 
horam  quintam  matutinam,  die  Veneris  xxviii.  Septembris, 
anno  m.d.xxcii."  Among  minor  variations  it  may  be  noted 
that  the  Herborn  text  prints  "  atque  "  for  "  avoque,"  "aliquam" 
for  "  ambiguam,"  "atque"  for  "  itaque,"  "probe"  for 
"  prope,"  "  dixit"  for  "  dixisset,"  and  suchlike.  It  also  adds, 
as  well  as  omits,  single  words  here  and  there.  In  one  place  a 
whole  sentence  is  dropped,  but  although  havoc  is  thus  played 
with  the  context  the  error  seems  never  to  have  been  rectified  in 
any  subsequent  edition.  Another  omission  has  a  more  practical 
bearing.  Ruddiman  asserts  that  in  all  the  editions  of  the  Vita 
the  statement  is  made  that  Buchanan  was  appointed  tutor  to 
the  King  in  1565  ("  ita  enim  constanter  exhibent  omnes  ejus 
vitae  editiones  ").  This  is  perhaps  true  of  the  Scotch  and  Dutch 
editions,  but  in  the  whole  series  of  Herborn  editions  this  state- 
ment does  not  once  occur.  Sir  Robert  Sibbald,  who  edited  the 
Vita    in    1702,    adding    marginal    dates^    and    a    commentary, 

'The  [lorboru  oditor  was  the  lirst  to  attempt  to  supply  the  Vita  with 
much  needed  dates.  His  attempt  was  praiseworthy,  but  his  calculations  were 
seldom  correct. 


The  Writings  of  George  Buchanan  185 

followed  the  former,  without  making  any  reference  to  the  source 
of  his  text.  Ruddiman,  in  1715,  reprinted  the  text  of  Sibbald, 
with  a  few  variations,  revising  and  multiplying  the  marginal 
dates,  and  adding  elaborate  notes  and  a  continuation.  Both 
Sibbald  and  Ruddiman  adhere  to  the  text  they  had  adopted  (it 
may  be  because  they  knew  no  other)  and  retain  the  impossible 
date  in  the  last  sentence — "  Cui  erudiendo  erat  praefectus  anno 
millesimo  quingentesimo  sexagesimo  quinto."  Irving,  on  the 
other  hand,  while  adhering  in  the  main  to  Ruddiman's  text 
prints  the  last  sentence  and  the  docquets  which  follow  exactly  as 
they  stand  in  the  Herborn  editions,  and  in  this  he  is  followed  by 
Professor  Hume  Brown.  This  mixing  of  texts,  without  warning 
to  the  reader,  is  misleading  and  at  variance  with  modern 
methods  of  dealing  with  historical  documents.  It  is  to  be  hoped 
therefore,  that  some  one  will  before  long  make  a  serious  effort 
to  trace  the  Vita  to  its  origin,  and  to  construct  a  reliable  text 
accompanied  by  such  critical  and  explanatory  notes  as  may  be 
necessary  for  its  elucidation. 

J.  M.  A. 


XIX. 

Buchanan's  Influence  on  his  Contemporaries. 

There  can  be  little  doubt  that  when  George  Buchanan,  in  1536, 
returned  for  a  time  to  Scotland  from  the  College  of  St.  Barbe 
in  Paris,  to  superintend  the  studies  of  the  young  Earl  of 
Cassillis,  he  was  already  regarded  by  the  learned  of  his  day 
as  one  of  the  greatest  scholars  of  his  own  or  any  preceding  age. 
Nor  was  so  exalted  a  reputation  undeserved.  For  variety  of 
culture,  as  well  as  accuracy  in  scholarship,  for  true  poetic 
inspiration,  united  to  a  calm  judicious  faculty  of  historic  and 
philosophic  judgment  and  critical  appraisement,  for  sound,  well- 
balanced  principles  on  the  theory  of  government  and  the 
reciprocal  duties  of  rulers  and  ruled,  for  a  true  sense  of  literary 
proportion  and  for  an  unfailing  fund  of  wit,  satire  and  irony — 
for  the  possession  of  all  these  in  felicitous  intermingling,  I  say, 
he  stood  unrivalled  among  the  writers  of  his  age. 

Buchanan  died  just  when  the  second  epoch  of  Humanism 
was  near  its  close,  and  he  was  amongst  the  latest  and  certainly 
was  the  greatest  of  its  glories.  That  his  name  was  familiar  to 
the  great  English  scholars  of  the  mid-sixteenth  century,  John 
Ireland,  Sir  John  Cheke,  Sir  Thomas  Wilson,  Roger  Ascham, 
and  others,  is  as  certain  as  that  he  was  on  terms  'of  intimacy 
with  all  the  great  Continental  Humanists,  who  saw  in  him  one 
of  themselves,  even  when  they  failed  to  recognise  those  higher 
principles  of  character  and  conduct  which  distinguished  him. 
There  is  little  doubt,  moreover,  that  his  satires  were  far  more 
widely  known  than  we  believe  them  to  have  been,  and  there  are 
frequent  lines  and  passages  in  nearly  all  the  great  English 
writers  from  Sackville  and  Gascoigne  to  Milton  and  Marvel 
which  are  only  free  translations  of  familiar  passages  in  his 
political  tracts,  his  satires  and  his  historical  works.  Holinshed, 
Stow,  Camden,  Speed  and  others,  reveal  not  only  the  acknow- 
ledged influence  of  Buchanan,  but  in  addition  more  than  one  of 
them  refer  to  him  either  to  commend  or  to  controvert. 


Buchanan's  Influence  on  his  Contemporaries     187 

Naturally,  however,  it  is  in  Scottish  Literature  more  distinc- 
tively, that  is  to  say,  in  the  works  of  writers  who  were 
not  only  treating  of  Scottish  themes,  but  were  Scotsmen  born 
and  bred,  that  we  find  the  influence  of  Buchanan  most  apparent. 
It  is  wrong  to  imagine  that  the  Scots  and  English  are  racially 
one,  and  that  what  differences  do  exist  are  merely  patriotically 
sentimental  and  dialectical.  Were  this  so  Bannockburn  and 
Flodden  would  never  have  been  fought.  Not  only  are  Scot  and 
English  as  racially  distinct  in  most  cases  as  Magyar  and  Czech, 
but  their  springs  of  sympathy  and  sources  of  national  feeling 
are  also  altogether  different. 

To  this  cause  must  be  attributed  the  fact  that  the  genius 
of  Buchanan,  supreme  though  it  was,  had  not  the  same  ex- 
tensive influence  in  England  as  in  Scotland  and  the  Continent 
of  Europe.  Buchanan's  culture  and  genius  had  certainly  more 
in  common  with  the  Continental  Humanism  than  with  that 
Elizabethan  Romanticism  which  was  then  making  a  fight  for  life, 
before  being  choked  in  the  uncongenial  atmosphere  of  seventeenth 
and  eighteenth  century  Classicism.  Buchanan's  Humanism  was 
neither  parochial  nor  one-sided — that  is  to  say,  he  neither 
believed  that  the  learning  of  any  land  or  any  epoch  constituted 
the  sum  total  of  culture.  Like  Odysseus,  he  had  studied  the 
countries  and  the  customs  of  many  men  and  it  was  his  prolonged 
Wanderjahre  that  made  him  the  polymath  he  became. 

Out  of  the  fulness  of  his  intellectual  treasury  he  distributed 
to  all  and  sundry,  and  it  is  singular  to  note  how  persistently 
his  mind  advanced  along  the  best  lines  of  progress  and  develop- 
ment. His  earliest  original  works  may  be  described  as  satires, 
the  chief  of  these  being  his  clever  poem  giving  that  vivid  picture 
of  his  daily  Kfe  as  a  pedagogue  at  Ste  Barbe,  his  Satire  on  the 
Sorbonne,  his  famous  Somnium,  his  Palinodia,  and  his  Fran- 
ciscanus.  Of  these  the  last  three  are  historic.  The  Somnium, 
a  vigorous  onslaught  upon  the  Franciscans,  may,  it  is  true,  be 
described  as  in  some  respects  little  more  than  a  paraphrase  of 
Dunbar's  splendid  poem  The  Visitation  of  St.  Francis  which 
begins : — 

This  nycht  befoir  the  dawing  oleir 
Me  thooht  St.  Francis  did  to  me  appeir 
With  ane  religiouae  abbeit  in  his  hand 
And  said  "  In  this,  go  cleith  the'  my  servand 
Refuis  the  warld,  for  thow  mon  be  a  Freir. 


188    Buchanan's  Influence  on  hisaContemporaries 

Both  poems  are  inspired  by  tlie  same  idea,  viz. — "  Is  it  worth 
while  to  become  a  Churchman  1  "  Dunbar's  is  the  wittier  piece, 
Buchanan's  the  more  sustained  efiEort  of  the  two,  but  there  can 
be  no  question  that  from  the  former  the  latter  drew  the 
materials  for  his  poem.  Franciscanus  which  traverses  much  the 
same  ground  as  the  Somnium,  was  composed  at  the  request  of 
James  V.,  who  seems  to  have  given  the  writer  some  under- 
standing that  he  would  protect  him  from  the  anger  of  the 
reverend  fathers.  But  in  this  case  the  cowl  proved  more  potent 
than  the  Crown,  and  Buchanan  had  to  run  before  the  storm. 
The  Palinodia  had  also  been  written  at  the  request  of  James 
and  were  bitter  onslaughts  against  the  Franciscans,  but  the 
King  did  not  consider  them  severe  enough  and  Franciscanus 
was  the  result.  As  a  satirist,  Buchanan  stands  in  the  very  first 
rank  and  there  can  be  little  wonder  that  his  style  was  imitated 
by  writers  alike  in  England  and  in  Scotland,  as  well 
as  on  the  Continent.  The  man  who  could  produce 
such  work  as  the  Somnium,  Franciscanus,  and  the 
Palinodia  in  Latin,  and  the  Admonitioun  to  the  Trew 
Lordis,  as  well  as  the  scathing  Ghamaeleon  in  the  Scots 
vernacular,  was  an  outstanding  master  of  his  craft.  Hence 
we  find  that  Buchanan's  satiric  work  exercised  a  very  marked 
influence  upon  the  mind  and  writings  of  several  of  his  contem- 
poraries, on  the  great  Andrew  Melville  (1545-1622)  to  whom, 
next  to  Knox,  the  Scottish  Reformation  owed  the  most  of  its 
direction  and  inspiration.  Sir  Richard  Maitland  of  Lethington 
(1496-1586),  albeit  an  older  man  than  Buchanan  by  ten  years, 
showed  how  profound  was  the  impression  made  upon  him  by 
the  Somnium,  the  Palinodia,  and  the  early  MS.  drafts  of 
Franciscanus,  by  his  obvious  references  to  them  in  his  works. 
In  fact,  the  Maitland  family  as  a  whole  seems  to  have  had 
intimate  relations  with  Buchanan.  Sir  Richard's  brother.  Sir 
John,  afterwards  Lord  Maitland  of  Thirlestane  and  Chancellor 
of  the  Kingdom  of  Scotland,  revealed  the  extent  of  Buchanan's 
influence  upon  him,  both  in  his  epigrams,  preserved  in  the 
Delitiae  Poetarum  Scotoruin,  and  in  his  satire  Aganis  Sklan- 
derous  Toungis,  which  is  in  many  features  only  a  free  para- 
phrase of  portions  of  Buchanan's  Satire  on  the  Sorbonne,  also 
that  on  The  Brothers  of  St.  Anthony  and  the  Palinodia.  Thomas 
Maitland,  one  of  Sir  Richard's  younger  sons,  wrote  some  ex- 
cellent Latin  poems  in  Buchanan's  manner,  and  was  chosen  by 


Buchanan's  Influence  on  his  Contemporaries    189 

the  latter  himself  as  one  of  the  interlocutors  in  his  great  work 
De  Jxire  Regni. 

Other  names,  both  Scottish  and  Continental,  might  be  men- 
tioned as  those  of  contemporaries  whose  works  show  a  tinge 
more  or  less  pronounced  of  the  great  Humanist's  influence — 
viz.,  Robert  Wedderburn  (better  known  as  a  religious  poet), 
Thomas  Hudson,  Alexander  Arbuthnot,  William  Fowler,  John 
Napier  of  Merchiston,  Alexander  Hume  and  John  Burrell ;  also 
in  England  such  satirists  as  Thomas  Dekker,  with  his  If  this 
be  not  a  good  Play  the  Devil  is  in  it,  W.  Turner's  Hunting  of 
the  Fox,  and  The  Trial  of  the  Masse,  George  Gascoigne's  Steel 
Glass,  and  Glass  of  Government,  Marston's  Scourge  of  Villainy, 
Hall's  Virgidemiarum  and  Nicholas  Grimoald's  Satires ;  and  on 
the  Continent  of  Europe  George  Witzel,  Nicodemus 
Frischlin,  Caspar  Brulow,  Thomas  Kirchmayer.  Many  of  these 
writers  may  simply  refer  to  Buchanan,  yet  the  mere  reference 
shows  the  marvellous  extent  of  his  influence — an  influence  which 
continued  to  increase  after  his  death. 

The  widely  diverse  character,  therefore,  of  those  contempor- 
ary writers,  in  whose  works  the  influence  of  Buchanan  can  be 
traced,  is  a  remarkable  testimony  to  the  amazing  versatility  of 
the  man.  Unless  in  the  case  of  Shakespeare  an  analogous 
instance  to  this  universality  of  influence  can  scarcely  be  cited. 
As  a  historian  he  influenced  his  contemporaries,  through  his 
History  of  Scotland  and  his  Detectio  Mariae  Reginae  Scotorum; 
on  the  poetry  of  the  epoch,  also,  he  left  his  impress  through 
his  Sphaera,  his  Epithalamiiim-,  his  Calendae  Maiae,  (which 
Wordsworth  considered  equal  to  anything  in  Horace),  his  ama- 
tory verse,  addressed  to  Leonora  and  Neaera,  and  his  matchless 
rendering  of  the  Psalms,  which  by  the  verdict  of  the  first  Latin- 
ists  of  the  world  have  been  held  to  be  worthy  of  the  Golden  Age 
of  Latin  Verse,  a  verdict  acquiesced  in  by  such  rival  translators 
as  Arthur  Johnston  himself.  As  a  dramatist,  moreover,  his 
Je-phthes,  his  Baptistes,  his  translation  and  adaptation  of  the 
Medea  and  the  Alcestis,  and  finally  his  Masque  for  the  Baptism 
of  James  VI.  all  appealed  profoundly  to  the  temper  of  the  time. 
Lastly,  as  a  political  writer  in  his  De  Jure  Regni,  his  Admoni- 
tioun  to  the  Trew  Lordis,  etc.,  how  keenly  and  how  correctly  did 
he  not  mould  the  opinions  of  all  the  more  liberal  minded  writers 
of  the  sixteenth  century  !  That  these  works  manifest  a  versatility 
and  fecundity  altogether  exceptional  will  be  the  first  thought 


190    Buchanan's  Influence  on  his  Contemporaries 

which  occurs  to  anyone  who  examines  the  case.  The  admiration, 
however,  will  be  distinctly  deepened  when  we  come  to  study 
the  works  with  critical  care,  and  realise  the  marvellously  high 
standard  of  excellence  which  is  maintained  throughout.  The 
individual  whom  the  jealous  mind  of  Julius  Caesar  Scaliger, 
recognised  as  his  superior  must  have  been  of  outstanding  merit 
indeed ;  while  the  younger  and  the  greater  Scaliger,  Joseph, 
(son  of  the  other)  affirmed  most  emphatically  "  In  Latin 
poetry,  Buchanan  leaves  all  Europe  behind." 

That  being  the  opinion  entertained  of  Buchanan  by  his 
contemporaries  abroad,  we  can  estimate  at  once  the  probable 
extent  and  depth  of  the  influence  exercised  by  Buchanan  at 
home,  when  his  fame  was  so  European  in  its  diffusion. 
Scotsmen  in  all  ages  have  been  impressed  by  the  tongue  of  good 
report  abroad,  and  the  mere  fact  that  he  occupied  so  supreme 
a  place  among  the  Humanists  of  Europe,  was  quite  sufficient  to 
ensure  Buchanan  a  permanent  as  well  as  a  prominent  place  in 
the  estimation  of  his  countrymen,  even  although  they  might  not 
be  qualified  to  gauge  the  character  of  his  works,  nor  be  able 
to  pronounce  upon  their  relative  excellence  as  regards  a  given 
standard. 

We  have  seen  his  influence  as  a  satirist  exercised  on  his 
contemporaries :  there  remains  his  influence  as  a  historian,  a 
publicist,  and  a  Humanist  translator  of  the  Psalms.  Buchanan's 
idea  was  that  by  writing  in  Latin,  the  language  of  the  learned, 
he  was  laying  the  foundations  of  his  fame  so  deep  and  sure  that 
they  would  never  be  moved.  He  had  lived  among  Humanists, 
he  had  imbibed  their  sentiments  and  had  imagined  the 
' '  Humanistic  We  "  to  be  as  far  reaching  in  its  mandatory  effects 
as  the  "  Imperial  Plural."  "  Alas,"  as  Professor  Hume  Brown 
says  "if  he  had  only  known  it,  even  when  he  wrote.  Modern 
Europe  had  rejected  Latin  as  the  vehicle  of  its  deepest  thoughts 
and  feelings."  All  the  more  credit  is  it  to  him  that  as  a 
Historian — whether  we  read  him  in  the  original  Latin  or  in 
the  excellent  English  translations  now  furnished — he  delights  us 
as  few  writers  do,  and  carries  home  to  our  minds  the  conviction 
that  this  is  no  ordinary  writer  whose  work  we  are  perusing, 
but  one  of  the  leading  minds  in  the  world's  hierarchy  of  letters. 
Granted  that  it  is  not  fair  to  read  Buchanan's  16th  century 
Latin  works  through  twentieth  century  spectacles,  all  the  more 
honour  it  is  to  him  that  we  do  not  need  to  suggest  this  plea  in 


ANDREW   MELVILLE. 


Buchanan's  Influence  on  his  Contemporaries     191 

extenuation  of  tedium,  that  he  is  writing  in  what  is  to  us  an 
alien  language. 

Now  as  John  Major  had  influenced  Buchanan  in  his  his- 
torical studies,  saliently,  but  not  wholly  beneficially,  as  he  him- 
self says,  so  Buchanan's  influence  may  be  traced  in  several  of 
his  contemporaries.  That  Buchanan  exercised  a  profound  in- 
fluence upon  John  Knox  is  now  well  recognised.  Again  and 
again  in  the  Reformer's  "  Historie  of  the  Reformation  "  there 
are  turns  of  expression  which  remind  us  of  passages  in  the 
Somnivm  and  Franciscanus.  Buchanan,  after  Knox's  death, 
was  asked  to  revise  certain  passages  in  the  latter's  Historie,  and 
from  this  we  may  argue  that  in  life  the  Reformer  had  freely 
utilised  the  aid  of  the  greatest  of  his  contemporaries. 

Another  writer  who  owed  much  to  Buchanan  was  Sir  James 
Melville  of  Halhill,  whose  Memoirs,  besides  referring  more  than 
once  to  Buchanan  by  name,  reveal  how  closely  the  courtier  had 
studied  all  the  works  of  the  old  Humanist.  Though  his 
political  opinions  were  far  from  being  so  liberal  as  those 
enunciated  by  Buchanan  in  De  Jure  Regni,  viz.,  that  absolute 
liberty  is  essential  to  the  true  growth  and  welfare  of  men, 
nevertheless,  James  Melville's  study  of  Buchanan  led  him  to 
take  up  towards  the  close  of  his  life  an  attitude  of  quiescent 
antagonism  to  the  King's  Divine  Right  views. 

The  famous  Andrew  Melville  and  his  nephew  James  Melville 
were  also  individuals  upon  whom,  as  public  men,  the  influence 
of  Buchanan's  works  was  especially  marked.  The  former,  who 
unquestionably  was  the  ablest  ecclesiastic  in  Scotland,  after 
Knox,  was  a  strange  mixture  of  the  Humanist  and  the 
Puritan.  In  this  Eclecticism  he  would  receive  no  sympathy 
from  Buchanan,  who  although  a  member  of  the  Reformed 
Church,  was  at  heart  a  Humanist,  and  the  Reformation  and 
Humanism  had  nothing  in  common.  As  Professor  Hume 
Brown  aptly  said: — "  Scotland,  whether  for  good  or  ill,  learned 
nothing  from  the  Revival  of  Letters.  Had  the  Renaissance 
touched  her  before  the  Reformation  it  might  have  been  other- 
wise. But  as  it  was,  the  Renaissance  came  to  her  through  the 
Reformation,  and  theology  dominated  her  schools  from  the 
moment  of  her  new  birth."  Despite  the  powerful  influence 
exercised  by  Buchanan's  works  upon  Melville,  between  the  men 
themselves  there  could  be  little  sympathy.  Thomas  Smeaton 
also,  second  Principal  of  the  University  of  Glasgow,  has  testified 


192     Buchanan's  Influence  on  his  Contemporaries 

to  the  benefit  he  had  received  from  the  personal  influence  and 
workg  of  Buchanan. 

Among  theologians  and  preachers,  there  were  two  others 
whose  careers  were  undoubtedly  moulded  for  them  to  some 
extent  by  Buchanan's  works,  viz.,  John  Craig  (1512-1600) 
the  colleague  of  Knox,  and  Robert  Rollock,  the  first  Principal 
of  Edinburgh  University.  The  former  had  come  under 
Buchanan's  influence  abroad,  and  the  latter  was  one  of  his 
students  at  St.  Andrews.  Both  of  them  repeatedly,  Craig  in 
his  sermons  and  Rollock  in  his  works,  testified  to  the  enormous 
intellectual  stimulation  they  had  received  from  Buchanan. 

Finally,  as  a  translator  of  the  Psalms  into  Latin,  Buchanan 
has  inspired  more  than  one  illustrious  scholar  to  follow  his 
example.  So  excellent  is  Buchanan's  version,  and  so 
felicitously  has  he  rendered  the  thoughts  of  the  Psalmist  into 
choice  idiomatic  Latin,  that  many  of  our  leading  scholars  have 
declared  that  a  Roman  of  the  Augustan  era  could  not  have 
succeeded  more  felicitously  in  clothing  the  ideas  of  the  Hebrew 
poet  in  a  fitting  Latin  garb.  Buchanan's  example  has  been 
followed  by  Arthur  Johnston,  who  has  also  achieved  triumphant 
success  in  the  attempt. 

Amongst  other  contemporaries  on  the  Continent  and  at  home 
who  during  their  lives  bore  testimony  to  the  value  of  the 
intellectual  stimulation  they  had  received  from  Buchanan,  were 
the  Reformer  Beza  of  Geneva,  also  Joannes  Serranus  (Jean  de 
Serres  of  Lausanne,  the  Editor  of  Plato),  Obertus  Gifanius  the 
Philologer,  Florent  Chrestien — the  Humanist — of  Vendome, 
Peter  Daniel  of  Orleans,  the  Scaligers  and  Turnebus,  Hubert 
Languet  of  Antwerp,  Janus  Dousa  and  Philip  de  Marnus  de 
Ste  Aldegonde,  both  of  Leyden,  and  Joannes  Sturmius  of 
Strasburg.  Among  Englishmen  and  Scotsmen,  Roger  Ascham, 
author  of  the  Scholemaster,  Dr.  Walter  Haddon  of  Oxford, 
Bishop  Jewel  of  Salisbury,  Sir  Anthony  Cook  and  his  learned 
daughters,  Daniel  Rogers  and  Sir  Thomas  Randolph,  the 
English  Ambassadors,  and  Nicholas  Udall,  were  a  few  of  those 
who  rejoiced  to  bear  testimony  to  Buchanan's  influence. 

Many  were  the  tributes,  public  and  private,  paid  to  Buchanan 
by  the  scholars  and  Uternti,  both  of  his  own  century  and  that 
which  succeeded.  Henricus  Stephanus,  said  of  him  that  he  was 
"  easily  the  first  poet  of  his  age,"  a  verdict  echoed  with  appro- 
bation by  Camden.     Later  on  the  great  Grotius  speaks  of  him  as 


Buchanan's  Influence  on  his  Contemporaries     193 

"  Scotiae  illud  numen,"  while  Salmasius  styles  him  "  the  greatest 
man  of  his  age."  Milton  praised  him  unstintedly,  so  did 
Abraham  Cowley,  and  neither  of  these  poets  was  over-liberal  in 
his  laudation  of  others,  while  Dryden  considered  that  as  a 
historian  he  was  comparable  to  any  of  the  moderns  and  excelled 
by  few  of  the  ancients.  That  there  were  many  others  who  did 
not  thus  acknowledge  the  benefits  derived  from  Buchanan,  yet 
were  influenced  by  his  life  and  works,  goes  without  saying.  Of 
Buchanan  himself,  of  a  truth,  we  may  say,  in  the  words  of 
Nicolas  Breton,  "  He  was  a  Sun  of  letters,  sent  to  this  dark 
land  to  shed  abroad  upon  us  the  light  and  the  leading  that  come 
to  us  from  his  unrivalled  learning." 

O.   S. 


XX. 

The  Humanist:   a  Psychological  Study. 

Although  in  some  ways  Psychology  is  the  youngest  of  modern 
studies,  it  is  undoubtedly  a  direct  result  of  the  Renaissance 
interest  in  all  that  concerned  mankind  and  of  the  Renaissance 
tendency  to  observe  and  examine  before,  instead  of  after, 
enunciating  fundamental  laws.  In  1690,  Locke  showed  the 
scope  of  the  new  inductive  science,  and  Scotland  re- 
sponded to  the  stimulus  just  as,  at  an  earlier  date, 
she  had  responded  to  Chaucer.  It  is  then  not  inappropriate 
that  a  volume  which  commemorates  Scotland's  greatest  humanist 
should  consider  his  character,  so  far  as  it  was  typical  of  his  age, 
by  the  light  of  a  humanistic  science  long  known  as  "  Scottish 
Metaphysics." 

The  intense  vitality  of  the  humanist  is  what  strikes  us 
at  the  outset  and  what  ever  remains  the  strongest  impression 
made  upon  the  student  of  the  Renaissance.  It  is  not  the  rest- 
less vitality  of  the  American  who,  like  jesting  Pilate,  asks, 
' '  What  is  Truth  ?  "  and  stays  not  for  an  answer,  nor  is  it  the 
departmental  vitality  of  the  specialist  whose  consciousness  is 
polarised  and  in  whom  a  section  only  of  his  environment  can 
awake  activity.  The  humanist  is  distinguished  from  these 
types  and  from  others  by  a  high  level  of  general  consciousness 
which  makes  him  forceful  in  every  activity  of  life.  There  is 
nothing  in  him  vaguely  intelligent,  weakly  emotional,  or  vacilla- 
ting of  purpose ;  whatever  aspect  of  mind  is  prepotent  for  the 
time  being  is  concentrated  to  a  high  degree.  The  exag- 
gerated habitual  bias  of  the  specialist  is  absent  and  yet  unity 
of  life  interest  is  strongly  marked,  differentiating  the  humanist 
from  the  American  who  is  not  "  interested  "  at  all,  but  only 
curious  as  regards  the  external  world. 

There  is  another  modern  type,  more  pleasant  to  meet  than 
those  already  mentioned,  which  is  nevertheless  but  a  travesty 


The  Humanist :  a  Psychological  Study         195 

of  sixteenth  century  humanism.  A  cultured  person  of  to-day 
is  frequently  humanistic  only  in  a  partial  sense — "  Humani 
nihil  a  me  alienvm  puto  "  expresses  only  half  the  truth,  yet 
too  many  end  their  creed  at  this  point,  and  we,  as  well  as  they, 
wonder  as  time  goes  on  why  their  influence  on  the  world  is  so 
feeble.  A  little  observation  and  comparison  soon  give  us  the 
answer.  This  modern  cultured  type  is  compacted  of  strongly 
emotional  interest,  with  the  more  intellectual  forms  less  well 
developed  and  without  that  potency  of  will  which  is  necessary 
to  balance  the  dissipating  tendency  of  wide  interests.  It  is 
lacking  both  in  the  elastic  balance  and  in  the  fulness  of  vitality 
supremely  characteristic  of  the  Renaissance  period.  There  were 
giants  in  those  days  who  brought  to  each  of  their  quickly  suc- 
ceeding interests  and  into  each  of  their  corresponding  desires, 
gigantic  power  of  concentrated  thinking  and  feeling,  or  of 
action  guided  by  unswerving  will.  Humanistic  schoolmasters 
of  to-day  would  do  well  to  have  this  twofold  ideal  in  view,  the 
rousing  of  widespread  interest  and  the  development  of  habitual 
concentration.  The  men  and  women  of  the  Renaissance  had 
their  moments  of  supreme  relaxation  as  well  as  of  supreme 
efiFort ;  the  bow  cannot,  as  well  as  must  not,  always  be  bent. 
But  concentration  was  a  habit  with  them  and  less  costly,  there- 
fore, than  a  more  explicit  effort  of  will,  and  it  is  this  habitude 
of  concentration  with  its  easy  performance  of  herculean  labours 
which  must  be  associated  with  the  stimulating  characteristic 
of  widespread  interest,  before  modern  education  and  modern 
men  and  women  can  rival  those  of  the  New  Birth.  The  amount 
of  actual  work  produced  during  the  sixteenth  century  was  in 
every  department  enormous,  and  yet  the  workers  were  com- 
paratively few.  If  we  explain  it  as  largely  due  to  the  mar- 
vellous stimulation  of  that  concurrence  of  movements  included 
under  the  term  Renaissance,  we  must  also  acknowledge  that 
events  of  the  nineteenth  century  in  this  respect  parallel  those 
of  earlier  days.  We  cannot  then  blame  our  environment,  and  if 
the  succeeding  age  is  unproductive,  the  lack  of  achievement 
must  be  largely  due  to  our  own  puny  characters  and  enfeebled 
vitality. 

Having  thus  laid  stress  on  the  importance  of  concentration, 
we  may  now  give  full  value  to  the  humanistic  quality  of  interest 
than  which  there  is  no  attitude  of  mind  so  educative,  so 
civilised, — in  the  best  sense  of  the  word.       It  was  this  going 


196         The  Humanist :  a  Psychological  Study 

forth  day  after  day,  in  the  belief  that  observation  of  their 
surroundings  would  repay  with  pleasure,  that  stimulated  the 
imaginative  powers  of  Shakespeare  and  Columbus,  of  Petrarch 
or  of  Raphael.  The  past  was  reconstructed,  the  spirit  as  well 
as  the  letter  of  Greek  was  understood.  The  known  world 
was  used  as  a  starting  point  from  which  to  reach  a  clearly 
pictured  unknown.  The  future  was  predicted  by  the  truly 
prophetic  gift  of  intellectual  foresight.  There  must  have  been 
moments  when  it  was  difficult  to  tell  what  century  a  man  really 
lived  in,  for  the  humanist  could  "  look  before  and  after"  and 
yet  needed  not  to  repine ;  the  best  of  the  ancient  world  as  well 
as  modern  life  was  his. 

The  efFect  of  this  widening  of  individual  experience  until 
co-extensive  with  that  of  the  race,  was  to  break  down  the  old 
systems  of  thinking,  of  education,  and  of  living  itself.  After 
the  long  rule  of  dialectic,  imagination  ran  riot ;  after  centuries 
of  passive  receptivity,  the  active,  creative  faculties  of  mind 
became  overwhelmingly  prepotent ;  after  the  iron  reign  of 
formal  habit  there  was  everywhere  an  irresistible  yearning  for 
spontaneous  development.  When  the  passion  for  living  and 
doing  was  so  strong  it  was  inevitable  that  excesses  should  occur, 
that  we  should  have  antinomians  in  every  form  of  creative  art 
as  well  as  in  religion  and  politics,  mystics  like  Wilhelmina  the 
Fraticellian,  and  humanistic  hooligans  such  as  the  Goliards  of 
Germany.  "  Lilies  that  fester  smell  far  worse  than  weeds,"  but 
while  these  extreme  types  are  more  repellant  than  the  mere 
grossness  of  medisevalism,  we  turn  with  pleasure  to  the  more 
normal  pattern,  a  man  whom  it  is  impossible  to  classify  in  our 
carefully  partitioned  table  of  human  activities,  who  may 
happen  to  be  best  remembered  as  a  scholar,  or  a  painter,  a 
poet  or  a  sculptor,  but  who  was  also  pre-eminent  in  his  own 
country  and  in  his  own  day  in  other  spheres.  Michael  Angelo, 
the  sculptor,  was  also  a  poet ;  Petrarch,  the  poet,  was  a  diplo- 
matist ;  Wolsey,  Churchman  and  diplomatist,  was  a  great  war 
minister ;  Gerson,  the  mystic  in  religion,  championed  the  rights 
of  the  laity  against  the  Papacy. 

This  tendency  is  noticeable  very  early  in  the  Renaissance. 
Dante  and  Chaucer,  each  for  his  counti-ymen  the  Janus  of  the 
movement,  won  renown  on  many  a  field.  Dante,  alternately 
Guelf  and  Ghibolline,  but  always  on  the  side  of  Italian  nation- 
ality,  was   a   diplomatist   and   a   writer   on   political   theory  as 


The  Humanist :  a  Psychological  Study         197 

well  as  a  poet  who  painted.  Chaucer  was  poet,  soldier,  diplo- 
matist, master  of  the  intellectual  thought  of  his  day,  besides, 
we  strongly  suspect,  inheriting  a  keen  business  faculty  from  his 
tavern  keeping  and  goldsmith  ancestors.  Benvenuto  Cellini 
was,  according  to  his  latest  translator,  "  jeweller,  goldsmith, 
sculptor,  musician,  writer,  soldier,  duellist,  and  man  of  plea- 
sure." Buchanan  was  a  diplomatist  like  Dante,  a  soldier  like 
Chaucer,  a  scholarly  educationalist  like  Petrarch,  counsellor  in 
war  and  in  Church  polity  like  Wolsey,  a  poet  who  mirrored 
his  day  in  a  symbolic  past,  like  Milton  (to  whom  he  also  gave 
the  lead  in  the  discussion  of  political  theories)  and  a  satirist 
of  religious  hypocrisy  comparable  to  Erasmus  and  Ulrich 
von  Hutten.  The  mere  modern  who  challenges  criticism 
in  half  as  many  departments  is  labelled  ' '  versatile "  in  the 
worst  sense  of  the  word.  We  live  at  a  lower  level  of  conscious- 
ness where,  for  efficiency,  we  must  resolutely  limit  our  likings 
and  desires,  but  Browning  echoes  a  true  note  of  the  Renaissance 
music  when  he  tells  how 

No  artist  lives  and  loves,  that  lougs  not 
Once  and  only  onoe,  and  for  one  only 
{Ah,  the  prize)  to  find  his  love  a  language 
Fit  and  fair,  and  simple  and  sufficient 
Using  nature  that's  an  art  to  others, 
Not,  this  one  time,  art  that's  turned  his  nature. 


So  to  be  the  man  and  leave  the  artist, 
Gain  the  man's  joy,  miss  the  artist's  sorrow. 

The  motive  alone  differed ;  pure  strength  of  vitality  impelled 
men  to  conquer  new  worlds.  The  scope  was  greater ;  it  was  not 
always  just  another  form  of  art  which  was  attempted. 

In  environment  so  complex  as  that  of  the  sixteenth  century 
the  interests  of  life  were  very  varied  and  our  humanists  group 
themselves  accordingly.  Strongly  defined  is  the  creative  artist 
so  typical  of  Italy,  where  love  of  beauty  and  desire  to  make 
what  is  beautiful  have  always  gone  hand  in  hand,  although  at 
the  present  day  a  more  purely  intellectual  type  of  interest 
seems  to  predominate.  In  Petrarch  the  artistic  and  intellectual 
sentiments  seem  almost  evenly  balanced ;  he  had  the  double 
ecstasy  of  discovering  knowledge  and  of  creating  beauty.  In 
Valla,  the  intellectual  sentiments  predominated,  and  he  ap- 
proaches nearer  to  the  Erasmus  type  to  whom  hypocrisy  and 


198         The  Humanist :  a  Psychological  Study 

falsehood  cause  as  much,  if  not  more,  pain  as  the  discovery 
of  truth  causes  pleasure.  Painful  emotion  is  a  spur  to  vigorous 
action,  hence  the  power  displayed  in  De  Donatione  Gonstantim, 
Julius  Secundus  Exclasus,  or  in  the  Franciscanus  and  the 
Somnium.  Potent  fervour  and  force  were  given  to  satire  of 
Church  abuses  north  of  the  Alps  by  the  strength  of  the  moral, 
as  well  as  of  the  intellectual,  sentiments  in  Teutonic  minds. 
Overpoweringly  strong  were  these  at  times,  indeed,  to  the 
complete  warping  of  the  humanistic  nature  with  its  universal 
sympathies.  Pure  morality  and  true  religion  were  dangerous 
magnets  for  Luther,  Calvin,  and  many  another.  The  work  they 
did  was  valuable  and  much  of  it  absolutely  necessary,  but  they 
certainly  departed  from  the  humanistic  ideal  of  many  sided 
interest  and  of  perfectly  balanced  mental  development. 

The  triumph  of  physical  pleasures  was  certain  to  be  marked 
in  the  overthrow  of  an  asceticism  which  had  warred  most  of  all 
upon  them,  and  here  too  the  strength  of  the  emotions  roused 
led  by  an  easy  Avernian  descent  to  departure  from  the  hxuuau- 
istic  spirit.  But  the  finer  spirits  were  saved  from  this  and  so, 
while  we  read  of  orgies  which  nothing  in  after  life  or  before 
redeems,  we  can  also  turn  with  relief  to  men  and  women  whose 
self-indulgence  took  less  crude  form  and  who,  either  as  artists 
or  patrons  of  art  have  made  us  their  bedesmen. 

Another  well  marked  group  was  dominated  by  the  social 
sentiment  of  nationality.  In  sub-conscious  form  this  force  was 
working  throughout  Europe  drawing  together  people  of  differing 
race  and  ignoring  geographical  unities  as  only  social  instincts 
can.  Dante  has  been  already  quoted  as  an  early  exponent 
of  nationality.  Rienzi,  striving  to  put  the  new  elixir  vita 
into  a  Roman  amphora,  attempted  a  disastrous  experiment  and 
failed  in  that  fore-knowledge  which  marked  the  greater  minds 
of  his  day.  Catharine  of  Siena  and  Petrarch,  urging  the  return 
of  the  Papal  Court  to  Rome,  offered  a  more  practical  but  not  less 
evanescent  solution.  Rienzi,  failing  as  does  many  an  idealist,  in 
his  conscious  effort,  yet  revived  the  noble  concept  of  true  citizen- 
ship to  become  the  educational  ideal  of  Vittorino  da  Feltre,  most 
noted  of  Italian  schoolmasters,  and  to  find  its  way  across  the 
Alps  as  a  permanent  inliuence  on  our  English  public  schools. 

Pico  doUa  Mirandola,  again,  is  representative  of  another 
humanistic  group  of  thinkers — perhaps  we  should  more  cor- 
rectly say  hiiicvcrs,  since  the  emotional  element  predominates — 


The  Humanist :  a  Psychological  Study         199 

for  whom  mystic  religious  sentiment  was  the  controlling  force 
of  consciousness.  In  many  ways,  this  is  the  most  complex  and 
curious  of  Italian  types.  Ahead  of  its  age  in  recognising  that 
religious  truth  and  moral  beauty  are  not  the  monopoly  of  any 
faith,  abreast  of  the  age  in  recognition  of  the  human  dignity, 
it  was  yet  too  closely  in  sympathy  with  mediaeval  symbolism 
and  with  the  more  subtle  platonic  realism  to  be  of  far  reaching 
influence  in  the  Renaissance  movement.  Pico  is  a  clearly  de- 
fined figure  in  the  sunshine,  but  with  his  exception,  the  best 
in  this  kind  are  but  shadows,  and  shades  which  please  us  after 
the  glowing  colours  of  all  the  rest. 

Interest,  wide  reaching  and  yet  concentrated,  is  then  the 
dominant  psychological  note  in  humanism,  and  it  is  in  relation 
to  it  that  we  must  consider  the  rest  of  that  harmonious 
character. 

The  most  immediate  effect  of  this  access  of  emotional  force 
was  probably  the  quickening  of  imaginative  power.  The  quan- 
tity of  creative  work  produced  during  the  sixteenth  century 
has  been  already  referred  to ;  the  high  average  of  its  quality 
requires  no  comment  here.  But  imagination  is  not  concerned 
with  the  inventive  faculty  alone.  It  is  an  essential  element  in 
sympathy,  and  was  consequently  of  importance  in  giving  intelli- 
gent direction  to  the  social  emotions  already  mentioned.  Practi- 
cal work  and  art  were  equally  affected.  Shakespeare  is  "  for  all 
time,"  just  because  his  naturally  sensitive  mind  was  stirred  by 
contact  with  men  of  other  lands  besides  his  own,  and  his 
sympathies  widened  by  interest  in  topics  other  than  the  great 
religious  and  social  questions  of  Tudor  England.  He  was  not 
thereby  made  indifferent  to  national  problems ;  on  a  shallow 
nature  this  would  certainly  have  been  the  effect,  but  then  the 
humanist  was  not  a  shallow  nature.  He  "  apperceived  "  them  all 
the  better  for  seeing  their  relation  to  the  European  struggle 
between  the  old  and  new  systems,  but  he  was  not  obsessed  by 
them.  We  find  no  obtrusion  of  the  Puritan  question  or  of  the 
struggle  with  Spain  in  his  dramatic  plots,  but  yet  we  can  clearly 
discern  that  his  larger  conceptions  of  life  were  moulded  upon 
these  realities.  The  affectionate  mention  of  him  by  his  contem- 
poraries would  lead  us  to  believe  that  his  sympathies  went  out  to 
individuals  as  well  as  to  great  national  movements. 

Such  another,  in  this  respect,  was  Colet,  the  hater  of  wars 
and  the  good  friend  of  little  children,  and  Buchanan  who  ' '  with 


200         The  Humanist :  a  Psychological  Study 

boys  became  a  boy  "  and  who  was  chosen,  at  a  critical  moment, 
to  be  helmsman  of  the  Scottish  Church.  Imaginative  sympathy 
produced  humanistic  historians.  Buchanan  entered  into  the 
spirit  of  the  Scottish  past,  Colet  made  St.  Paul  a  man,  and  not 
merely  an  author,  for  his  hearers,  and  the  first  century  of 
Christianity  became  a  reality  as  he  spoke  of  its  events.  Thomas 
More  shared  the  gifts  of  these  two.  Increased  opportunities  may 
enable  us  to  dispute  some  details  of  fact,  but  we  are  eternally 
indebted  to  them  for  the  new  spirit  in  which  they  handled 
their  material. 

Again,  this  many-sided  interest  with  the  concomitant  sym- 
pathy born  of  imagination  led  to  a  detachment  in  thought,  an 
impartiality  of  criticism,  an  open-mindedness  in  debate,  and  a 
lack  of  animus  when  the  humanist  was,  by  circumstances, 
forced  to  speak  or  write  on  partisan  lines. 

To  many  people,  whether  of  the  sixteenth  or  the  twentieth 
centuries,  beata  tranquillitas  in  the  face  of  abuses  which  cry 
for  removal  is  not  a  pleasing  virtue,  and  once  more  it  must 
be  granted  that  the  man  of  action  is  necessary  quite  as  much 
as  the  humanist.  But  the  practical  man  so-called,  is  often 
unconsciously  driven  into  unconsidered  action  not  because  of 
greater  force  of  character,  nor  yet  because  his  sympathies  are 
more  quickly  and  deeply  stirred,  but  simply  because  he  lacks 
knowledge  of  the  possibilities,  and  because  in  an  ill-balanced 
nature  the  desire  to  act  has  overpowered  the  intellectual 
faculties.  With  shallow  enthusiasm  of  this  kind  the  humanistic 
spirit  is  in  everlasting  conflict,  but  there  is  a  nobler  and  rarer 
idealism  which,  based  upon  wide  knowledge  interpreted  by  sym- 
pathetic imagination  (so  lacking  in  the  average  idealist),  is  the 
fairest  incarnation  of  active  belief.  Here  are  met  the  open- 
minded  judicial  attitude  of  humanism  and  fervent  idealism, 
in  potent  and  beneficial  union.  But,  alas,  strait  is  the  gate  and 
narrow  is  the  way  and  few  there  be,  in  any  age,  that  find  it. 

We  are  acustomed  to  associate  the  southern  temperament 
with  fervour,  but  it  is  interesting  to  note  that  this  open-minded- 
ness is  more  characteristic  of  the  Italian  than  of  the  Teutonic 
Renaissance.  It  is,  of  course,  mainly  explicable  by  the  earlier 
date  of  the  Italian  movement  and  its  consequent  limitation  to 
the  more  sensitive  natures  as  well  as  to  its  independence  of  the 
practical  problems  which  modified  the  northern  development. 
The   early   humanists   in   Germany   were   as   detached   in  spirit 


The  Humanist :  a  Psychological  Study         201 

as  any,  but  social  and  religious  sentiments  being  stronger  in 
their  race,  the  movements  took  popular  form  on  these  lines. 
The  average  Italian  developed  an  artistic  and  literary  sense; 
the  average  German,  Englishman  or  Scot  interested  himself  in 
religion,  education,  or  political  rights.  Increased  knowledge 
of  these  subjects  brought  with  it  strong  beliefs,  strong  alike  in 
individuals  and  in  churches  or  parties.  Consequently,  in  the 
latter  part  of  the  sixteenth  and  during  the  entire  seven- 
teenth centuries,  we  find  whole  nations  at  death  grips — France 
(where  the  struggle  began  and  ended  earliest),  Germany,  Scot- 
land, and  England,  split  into  hostile  camps  in  bitter  conflict 
over  some  political  or  religious  article  of  faith.  It  is  in  in- 
dividuals alone  that  we  find  traces  of  the  old  spirit.  Elizabeth 
of  England  was  only  a  little  less  indifferent  on  burning  ques- 
tions than  Henry  IV.  of  France  and  Catharine  di  Medici,  and 
it  is  worthy  of  note  that  the  Church  of  England  owes  its 
peculiar  characteristics  and  its  peculiar  difficulties  to  its  organis- 
ation by  humanist  ecclesiastics  and  statesmen.  The  other 
Churches  formed  about  this  date  to  this  day  re-echo  the  fervour 
of  their  idealistic  founders. 

"  It  taks  a'  sort  o'  fowk  to  mak'  a  warld,"  but  the  pity 
of  it  is  that  in  the  transition  stage,  typical  men  of  either  side 
failed  in  humanistic  sympathy,  and  that  friends  who,  in  less 
critical  days,  worked  together  all  the  better  for  the  difference 
in  the  personal  equation,  now  separated  with  the  bitterness  of 
disillusionment.  Luther  cannot  understand  Erasmus ;  Erasmus 
shrinks  from  Luther.  Henry  VIII.  turns  partisan  and  bigot, 
and  the  old  friendship  for  More  cannot  save  the  Chancellor's 
head.  Buchanan  and  Knox  understood  each  other  better  than 
Luther  and  Erasmus ;  they  had  been  brought  up  entirely  in 
the  world,  while  over  the  two  latter  the  idola  of  the  cloister 
had  subconscious  power.  But  still,  the  followers  of  Knox  and 
Buchanan  would  fain  make  them  leaders  of  hostile  camps. 
Saddest  of  all  perhaps  is  the  broken  friendship  between 
Buchanan  and  his  Queen.  Mary,  by  upbringing  a  humanist 
of  the  Medicean  type,  pleasure  seeking  and  material,  could  not 
see  that  in  the  northern  humanist,  ruled  by  the  moral  senti- 
ments, she  had  her  natural  complement  and  her  best  friend. 
We  deny  a  partisan  spirit  foreign  to  humanism  in  the 
Detectio :  we  see  in  it  the  greater  tragedy  of  disillusionment, 
and  of  a  lost  ideal  of  womanhood. 


202         The  Humanist :  a  Psychological  Study 

Much  remains  to  be  worked  out  fully,  but  we  may  sum  up 
the  main  characteristics  of  humanism  as  follows :  —first,  a 
strong  vitality,  which  made  mental  processes  rapid,  as  well  as 
habitually  concentrated,  and  which  made  the  connection 
between  thought,  emotion  and  volition  close  and  intimate,  all 
consciousness  responding  vigorously  to  the  prepotent  aspect : 
secondly,  abnormal  development  in  the  emotion  of  interest, 
giving  keenness  to  the  observation,  strength  to  the  memory,  and 
freshness  to  the  imagination :  thirdly,  on  the  intellectual  side, 
imagination  is  the  most  active  faculty ;  it  reconstructs  the  past 
and  discovers  or  foretells  the  future.  Brought  to  bear  upon 
mankind,  imagination  evokes  sympathy,  at  times  almost  uni- 
versal in  its  scope,  and  in  specialised  forms  leading  to  social  and 
educational  schemes  for  the  betterment  of  the  weaker  classes. 
A  more  purely  intellectual  form  of  imagination  leads  to  im- 
partiality and  freedom  from  bias  in  thought,  a  beata  tranquil- 
litas  as  far  removed  from  Gallio's  indifference  as  it  is  from  the 
Stoic  contempt  for  life. 

While  the  emotional  and  intellectual  faculties  are  thus 
developed,  the  strength  of  will  which  carries  men  through  great 
enterprises  is  abundantly  evident.  Men  knew  their  power  and 
believed  most  of  all  in  themselves. 

It  matters  little  that  balanced  development  of  mind  is  not 
to  be  found  in  every  great  man  of  those  days,  that  the  artist 
sometimes  overpowered  the  thinker  south  of  the  Alps,  or  that 
more  frequently  the  thinker  subdued  the  artist  north  of 
them.  It  is  easy  to  note  such  exceptions:  and  indeed  they  are 
neither  few  nor  insignificant.  But  for  all  that,  harmony  and 
symmetry  are  essential  characteristics  of  the  humanist,  and  the 
cases  we  refer  to  are  exceptional,  not  because  these  qualities  are 
entirely  lacking,  but  simply  because  they  are  less  evident. 

How  does  the  subject  of  this  volume  appear  when  tried  by 
the  standard  ?  Buchanan  was  not  altogether  Teuton ;  very  few 
Scots  are.  From  a  mother  born  in  the  Lothians  and  from  a 
Highland  father,  he  had  the  gift  of  tongues  by  birth 
as  well  as  by  education  in  Scotland  and  France.  Four 
hundred  years  after  his  birth  he  is  honoured  in  prose  and 
verse  as  thinker  and  literary  artist,  as  scholar  but  also 
as  leader  of  men  of  action,  as  open-minded  friend,  as  un- 
sparing critic  and  ' '  unfriend  "  of  what  pained  his  moral  sense. 
In  the  essential  qualities  of  concentration,  of  universal  interest, 


The  Humanist :  a  Psychological  Study  203 

of  clear  imagination,  of  wide  sympathies  and,  finally,  of  de- 
tachment from  party  and  party  spirit,  he  was  a  typical  embodi- 
ment of  the  humanistic  spirit.  The  Teuton  in  him  made  intellect 
predominant  and  directed  his  creative  powers  to  literature,  but 
the  grace  of  his  style  and  the  delicacy  of  his  fancy,  as  well  as 
the  fervour  of  his  satire,  were  a  Celtic  inheritance. 

Is  it  too  much  to  hope  that,  in  a  century  which  of  all 
others  most  nearly  reproduces  the  stimulating  environment  of 
the  Renaissance  and  in  the  country  of  Buchanan's  birth,  the 
spirit  of  humanism  will  be  fostered  with  careful  wisdom  as  the 
most  enduring  monument  to  Scotland's  great  humanist  ? 

L.  P  .S.  H. 


XXL 

Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar. 

Buchanan  was  not  a  Scholar,  in  the  same  sense  of  the  word  as 
Turnebe  or  Lambin  or  Scaliger  or  Nicolas  Heinsius.  He  did 
not,  like  them,  add  to  our  knowledge  of  the  life  and  thought, 
the  history  and  literature  of  the  Romans.  He  never  edited 
the  works  of  any  Latin  poet,  although  he  read  and  read  again 
all  the  Latin  poets  till  he  almost  knew  their  verses  by  heart. 
In  a  word  he  was 

"Contented,  if  he  might  enjoy 
The  things  that  others  understand." 

It  is  to  the  Scholars  of  the  sixteenth  century  that  we  owe  our 
Latin  texts.  They  explored  the  Libraries  of  Europe  for 
ancient  MSS.  ;  they  examined  the  claims  of  this  or  that  MS. 
to  be  the  more  faithful  representative  of  the  actual  words  of 
an  ancient  author ;  they  made  a  minute  study  of  the  style  and 
diction  of  each  author  so  as  to  discriminate  the  genuine  from 
the  spurious  version  of  a  line ;  they  collected  from  all  available 
sources  every  scrap  of  evidence  regarding  the  author's  life  and 
character,  his  purpose  in  writing,  his  attitude  of  mind.  By 
these  laborious  means  they  removed  the  accretions  which  had 
in  the  course  of  centuries  gathered  round  the  writings  of  the 
ancients  and  gave  to  the  world  each  poem  of  Virgil,  Horace, 
Ovid  and  the  rest  as  nearly  as  possible  in  the  actual  form  in 
which  it  had  been  written  down  by  the  author.  When  we  try 
to  read  any  of  these  poets  in  an  earlier  edition,  we  stumble 
over  something  unintelligible  or  incongruous  or  ungrammatical 
in  every  other  line.  It  is  then  that  we  realize  what  a  debt 
we  owe  to  the  work  of  these  sixteenth  century  Scholars. 

To  all  this  noble  work  of  recovering  for  the  modern  world 
the  writings  of  the  ancient,  Buchanan  contributed  not  one  jot. 
He  was,  in  this  respect,  a  drone  in  the  hive.  It  is  an  injustice 
to  Scaliger  and  Heinsius  when  we  class  Buchanan  with  them 
and  speak  of  him  as  a  Latin  Scholar.  Buchanan  was  of  quite 
a  different  type.     He  would  be  more  correctly  described  as  a 


Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar  205 

journalist,  pamphleteer,  man  of  letters,  at  a  time  when  Latin 
was  the  common  language  of  the  educated  world.  Latin  was 
for  him  merely  the  instrument  by  which  he  expressed  his  ideas 
to  other  minds.  Latin  was  his  tool,  and  Buchanan  plied  it 
with  the  hand  of  a  master.  No  one  has  ever  equalled  him  as  a 
writer  of  Latin  Verse. 

Now-a-days  we  should  not  think  much  of  a  Latin  Scholar 
whose  only  contribution  to  Scholarship  was  a  collection  of  Latin 
verses,  however  faithfully  they  reproduced  the  feeling  and 
diction  of  the  ancient  poets.  No  doubt  the  successful  writing 
of  Latin  Verse  implies  a  sympathy  with  Roman  poetry  and  a 
minute  knowledge  of  the  Latin  poetic  vocabulary,  and  claims 
our  respect  on  this  account.  But  after  all  it  is  the  ape-like 
faculty  of  the  human  mind,  the  faculty  of  imitation,  that  is 
cultivated  in  Latin  Composition ;  and  we  give  little  more  credit 
to  a  ready  writer  of  Latin  Verse  than  we  would  allow  to  a 
smart  junior  clerk  in  the  Diplomatic  Service  who  was  able  to 
chatter  in  half  a  dozen  foreign  languages.  Latin  Composition, 
especially  Verse  Composition,  no  longer  holds  the  same  place 
even  in  English  Public  Schools  and  Universities  that  it  held  a 
century  ago.  Still,  for  my  own  part,  I  should  be  sorry  to  see 
it  dropped  from  the  curriculum.  To  take  it  at  the  lowest 
estimate,  no  student  who  does  not  practise  Latin  Versification 
can  ever  be  sure  of  knowing  "  Quantity,"  in  other  words,  the 
correct  pronunciation  of  Latin  words. ^  Another  and  a  higher 
part  that  it  plays  in  education  is  that  it  shews  the  student  how 
the  same  ideas  are  expressed  in  Latin  and  in  English  poetry 
and  enables  him  to  read  a  Latin  poet  with  better  appreciation 
and  understanding.  Professor  Tyrrell,  in  his  edition  of  a 
Comedy  of  Plautus,  has  included  a  few  of  his  own  renderings 
of  passages  from  English  Dramas  into  Latin  Dramatic  Verse. 
The  idea  is  an  excellent  one.  They  provide  the  student  with  a 
key  for  re-setting  the  ancient  melody  to  a  modern  tune.  They 
enable  him,  when  he  reads  a  sentence  of  Plautus,  to  say  to 
himself  "  This  is  how  a  Latin  Dramatist  expresses  exactly  the 

'  I  found  an  amusing  instance  of  this  the  other  day.  At  a  Congress  of  the 
Classical  Scholars  of  Germany,  the  bronze  medal,  presented  to  each  member 
of  the  Congress,  had  as  a  motto  a  line  of  Horace  in  this  form,  "  Labitur  atqiie 
labetur  in  omne  volubilis  aevum,"  with  a  false  quantity  at  the  beginning  of 
the  line.  There  are,  I  believe,  only  two  schools  in  Germany  where  Latin 
V^erse  Composition  is  taught. 


206  Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar 

same  sentiment  as  would  be  expressed  in  this  other  way  by 
Congreve  or  Sheridan."  Plautus  is  of  all  Latin  poets  the  one 
with  whom  a  modern  reader  can  most  easily  feel  in  sympathy; 
for  his  fun  and  jollity  appeal  to  us  as  much  to-day  as  they  did 
to  his  contemporaries.  The  only  obstacle  is  his  unfamiliar 
diction.  Professor  Tyrrell's  Latin  Verses  do  a  great  deal  to 
remove  this  obstacle,  by  shewing  us  how  an  English  joke  would 
appear  in  Plautine  language.  But  most  of  all  is  Latin  Verse 
writing  necessary  to  the  advanced  student.  I  do  not  see  how 
one  can  thoroughly  appreciate  the  artistic  side,  the  technique 
of  Latin  Poetry,  who  has  not  himself  tried  the  experiment  of 
imitating  Latin  metres ;  and  I  trust  that  the  day  is  far  distant 
when  Scholars  in  this  country  will  abandon  the  habit  of  trans- 
lating their  favourite  passages  of  English  poetry  into  Latin 
poetical  form. 

This  is  the  method  of  Latin  Verse  Composition  that  is 
followed  at  the  present  day.  A  short  poem  of  Keats  or 
Tennyson,  or  else  a  passage  of  Shakespeare  or  Milton,  is 
rendered  in  Latin  verse.  No  one  would  think  of  writing  an 
original  poem  in  Latin,  as  Buchanan  did.  And  this  difference 
of  practice  makes  it  difficult  to  compare  Buchanan  with  the 
leading  verse-writers  of  this  and  the  last  century,  such  as 
Robinson  Ellis,  Jebb,  Evans,  Kennedy  and  others.  It  may  be 
said  that  Buchanan's  task  was  the  harder  one,  inasmuch  as  he 
had  to  provide  the  ideas  as  well  as  the  Latin  words.  On  the 
other  hand  a  Latin  version  of  a  passage  of  Tennyson  has  to 
bear  comparison  with  the  English  original,  while  Buchanan's 
lines  have  no  such  rival  to  diminish  their  lustre.  Certainly  the 
same  defect,  perhaps  an  unavoidable  defect,  attaches  to  both 
types  of  Latin  verse-imitations,  namely,  the  use  of  what 
English  public-school  boys  call  "  tags  "  ;  that  is  to  say,  phrases 
or  short  descriptions  transferred  bodily  from  some  ancient  poet 
into  a  modern  version.  Take  this  passage  of  Buchanan's  Be 
Sphaera,  the  most  ambitious  of  all  his  poetical  works : 

Proximus  huie,  parvo  sed  proximus  intervallo, 
Merourius,  laetoque  diem  modo  Lucifer  astro 
Praeveniens,  idem  nootis  praemmtius  ignis 
Hesperus,  observans  Solem  prope  passibus  aeqnia; 
Ut  medius  rerum  Sol  omnia  lumine  lustret, 
Educet  et  fovoat,  flammis  nunc  oelsua  in  Arcton 
Rmicot,  humontos  nuno  so  dimittat  in  Austros. 


Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar  207 

An  unkind  critic  might  describe  this  as  a  patchwork  of  "  tags." 
Buchanan  has  here  drawn  upon  certain  well-known  lines  of 
Latin  poets,  and  has  with  considerable  skill  strung  together  a 
number  of  phrases  that  are  all  borrowed.  Nor  is  this  passage 
an  exception.  We  do  not  read  many  lines  of  the  De 
Sphaera  before  we  come  across  Lucretius'  noble  phrase, 
flammantia  moenia  mundi,  and  the  phrase  is  pressed  into 
service  again  within  the  first  hundred  lines.  A  little  further 
on  we  have  nearly  a  whole  line  of  Virgil's,  verrens  abiegnis 
aequora  palmis;  then  Horace  furnishes  a  contribution,  finitimis 
excludit  iurgia  limes,  and  so  on.^  The  same  thing  is 
found,  but  not,  I  think,  to  the  same  extent,  in  Latin  Verse 
of  the  present  day ;  and  I  suppose  there  is  some  justification 
for  it.  If  Lucretius  or  Virgil  or  Horace  invented  the  one 
exactly  appropriate  phrase  for  describing  this  or  that  object 
or  this  or  that  action,  why  should  not  the  modern  imitator 
avail  himself  of  the  invention  ?  And  yet,  how  could  we  tolerate 
an  English  poem  from  some  French  or  German  admirer  of 
Tennyson,  which  consisted,  to  a  great  extent,  of  Tennysonian 
phrases,  like  "  a  land  in  which  it  seemed  always  afternoon," 
"  tiptilted  like  the  petal  of  a  flower,"  and  so  on,  and  so  on? 
If  one  wishes  to  read  Buchanan's  poetry  with  enjoyment,  one 
has  to  try  to  forget  that  others  have  said  the  same  things  before. 
But  this  defect — and  it  is  a  defect  shared  to  some  extent  by 
Latin  poets  of  the  Silver  Age  and  of  the  Christian  period,  who 
are  always  borrowing  from  Virgil — cannot  impair  Buchanan's 
claim  to  be  the  best  writer  of  Latin  verse,  that  is,  of  original 
Latin  verse,  since  the  Revival  of  Learning.  His  facility  in 
widely  different  styles  of  Latin  poetry  is  amazing.  Some  of 
his  epigrams^  would  not  have  been  disdained  by  Martial,  e.g., 

Fruatra  ego  te  laudo,  frustra  me,  Zoile,  laedis, 
Nemo  mihi  credit,  Zoile,  nemo  tibi. 

'  Professor  Hume  Brown  doubts  whether  Buchanan  wrote  suis  or  tuia  at 
the  end  of  the  Epigram  to  Lennox  : — 

Denique  da  quidvis,  podagram  modo  deprecor  unam  : 
Munus  erit  mediois  aptius  ilia  suia. 

A  reference  to  the  line  of  Martial  from  which  the  last  sentence  is  borrowed 
shows  that  he  wrote  suia. 

2  Still  I  think  he  is  inferior  to  Owen  as  an  epigrammatist.      Of  course 
Owen  wrote  a  great  deal  more  of  this  style  of  verse  than  Buchanan. 


208  Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar 

His  Satire  on  the  Franciscans  is  reminiscent  of  Juvenal,  his 
De  Sphaera  of  Lucretius;  his  Elegiacs  and  Lyrics  are 
always  pleasing,  although  Wordsworth  exaggerated  in  declaring 
the  Alcaic  "  May-day  "  to  be  worthy  of  Horace.  Of  the  later 
Roman  poets  he  has,  I  think,  imbibed  most  of  the  spirit  of 
Claudian.  In  almost  all  of  his  writings  (to  omit  the  Epigrams 
and  Dramas)  there  are  turns  of  expression  or  even  mere 
metrical  cadences  that  remind  one  of  Claudian.  What  a  time 
he  must  have  spent  in  reading  and  re-reading  these  authors! 
How  great  a  portion  of  his  life  must  have  been  given  up  to  the 
practice  of  Latin  Verse  Composition !  It  may  be  said  that 
this  was  waste  of  time.  It  would  be  in  our  own  day,  but  it 
was  not  in  Buchanan's  period.  For  Latin  was  then  the 
recognised  vehicle  of  communication  between  educated  men  of 
the  different  countries  of  Europe;  and  the  more  polished  the 
Latin  verse,  the  more  chance  it  had  of  carrying  its  message 
home.  It  was,  therefore,  worth  Buchanan's  while  to  cultivate 
to  the  utmost  his  natural  bent  for  imitating  the  Latin  poets. 
And  this  he  did  with  such  success  that  his  poetical  remains  are 
even  now,  when  the  events  to  which  they  refer  belong  to  the 
forgotten  past,  almost  as  pleasant  reading  as  some  of  the  second 
or  rather  third-rank  poetry  of  antiquity. 

I  say  "  almost,"  because  there  are  three  things  which,  in 
my  opinion,  prevent,  and  must  always  prevent,  Buchanan's 
Latin  poems  from  securing  a  wide  circle  of  readers.  And  these 
three  things  are  of  some  importance  to  us  in  forming  an 
estimate  of  Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar.  The  first  is  the 
number,  the  surprising  number,  of  false  quantities  in  his  lines. 
Of  course  there  is  much  to  be  said  in  extenuation  of  this  fault. 
The  texts  of  the  Latin  poets  were  in  his  period,  at  least  in  his 
student-period,  still  published  in  a  very  inaccurate  form.  An 
English  Public  School  boy  of  to-day  could  easily  quote  a  line  of 
Martial  or  Catullus  from  which  Buchanan  might  have  learned 
the  correct  quantity  of  this  or  that  Latin  word.  But  in  the 
texts  of  Martial  and  Catullus  that  were  at  Buchanan's  disposal, 
the  line  was  quite  as  likely  to  be  presented  in  incorrect  form  as 
not.  That  is  one  excuse  that  may  be  offered.  Another  is  that 
the  quantity  of  some  words  is  known  only  from  the  Latin 
Comedies ;  and  the  laws  of  the  Comedians'  metres  were  not 
discovered  till  long  after  Buchanan's  time.  In  fact  they  have 
not  been  wholly  elucidated  yet.     Another  plea,  that  is  more  or 


Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar  209 

less  reasonable,  is  that  the  sharp  distinction  was  not  made  then, 
as  it  is  now,  between  classical  Latin  poetry  and  the  poetry  of 
a  later  period,  when  the  pronunciation  of  many  words  had 
changed.  But  in  spite  of  all  that  can  be  brought  forward  in 
Buchanan's  justification,  the  awkward  fact  remains  that  on 
page  after  page  we  find  a  false  quantity,  and  often  in 
the  case  of  words  whose  quantity  was  easily  ascertainable. 
The  first  stanza  of  his  ' '  May-day  "  has  dicatae  scanned  with 
the  first  syllable  long.  Now  Buchanan  must  have  known  the 
common  Latin  verbs,  indicare,  dedicare  and  the  other  com- 
pounds of  dicare.  What  excuse  had  he  for  being  ignorant  of 
the  pronunciation  of  words  like  these  ?  That  he  might  have 
written  the  line  in  this  incorrect  form  in  the  first  heat  of 
composition  is  possible  and  pardonable,  but  that  the  error 
should  have  remained  undetected  by  him  and  that  the  line 
should  ultimately  be  published  in  this  shape  seems  to  a 
Latinist  of  the  twentieth  century  quite  inexcusable.  Is  it  that 
we  are  more  squeamish  now  ?  Should  we  admire  the  robustness 
of  a  Buchanan  who  disdained  to  take  heed  of  blemishes  like 
these  ?  We  can  hardly  assent  to  this  suggestion,  when  we 
reflect  that  Latin  verse  is  quantitative  verse ;  its  rhythm,  its 
poetical  nature,  depends  on  the  arrangement  of  long  and  short 
syllables ;  and  to  substitute  a  short  for  a  long  syllable  in  a  line 
throws  the  whole  line  out  of  gear.  We  cannot  approve  of  the 
Frenchman's  rhymed  English  couplets  on  Shenstone,  in  which 
"rural"  is  made  to  rhyme  with  "  natural."  The  false  rhyme 
murders  the  metre  and  makes  it  a  "  corpus  mortuum." 
Similarly  a  false  quantity  in  a  Latin  poem  is  not  a  mere  trivial 
blemish,  like  a  misspelling  or  a  false  grammatical  concord ;  it 
makes  a  verse  cease  to  be  a  verse. 

There  is  another  thing  that  mars  our  enjoyment,  especially 
of  his  Dramatic  writings.  But  it  is  of  lesser  importance,  for 
Buchanan's  Dramas  are  the  least  interesting  of  his  works  and 
do  not  at  all  rise  to  the  level  of  his  Satirical  and  Didactic 
poetry.  And  it  need  not  diminish  our  admiration  of  the 
writer's  scholarship.  It  is  the  disregard  of  certain  laws  of 
Latin  Dramatic  Verse,  which  forbid  the  use  of  this  or  that 
metrical  foot  at  certain  parts  of  the  line.  These  laws  were  not 
known,  or  only  partially  known,  in  the  sixteenth  century;  the 
discovery  of  them  has  been  a  slow  process.  Buchanan  could 
not  well  have  learned  them  from  his  teachers;  and  it  would  be 
p 


210  Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar 

too  much  to  expect  that  he  should  have  completely  assimilated 
himself  to  the  Latin  Dramatists  whose  works  he  read  so  often 
and  so  closely,  and  should  have  unconsciously  caught  up  each 
detail  of  their  method  of  constructing  a  line.  Still  it  is 
impossible  to  read  with  pleasure  a  Latin  line  in  Iambic  Metre, 
whose  construction  is  inconsistent  with  the  character  of  the 
Latin  language. 

Even  if  Buchanan's  lines  were  free  from  the  two  faults  I 
have  mentioned,  faults  of  prosody  and  of  metre,  there  is  a 
third  defect,  which  tries  the  patience  of  a  reader.  I  mean  that 
insincerity,  that  unreal,  artificial  tone  which  necessarily 
attaches  to  poems  written  in  a  dead  language  about  living 
people.  It  is  least  objectionable  in  ceremonious  pieces,  like  the 
congratulatory  lines  which  he  composed  as  poet  of  the  Court 
or  the  Epithalamium  or  the  Pompa  Deorum.  Verses  of 
this  type,  written  to  order,  are  expected  to  be  more  or  less 
unnatural.  But  when  we  read  in  Latin  about  the  misdoings 
of  the  Franciscans  or  the  latest  theory  of  Astronomy,  we  cannot 
escape  the  feeling  that  we  should  have  preferred  to  read 
Buchanan's  sentiments  expressed  in  his  own  language.  It  does 
indeed  compel  our  admiration,  when  we  find  him  throughout 
his  long  astronomical  poem,  De  Sfhaera,  carefully  avoiding 
any  sentiment  or  metaphor  or  mode  of  expression  that 
is  more  modern  than,  let  us  say,  the  fourth  century  a.d.  But, 
we  ask  ourselves,  why  should  he  voluntarily  impose  these  fetters 
on  his  imagination  ?  Why  should  he  restrict  himself  to  the 
pace  possible  to  a  Roman  of  twelve  centuries  earlier,  instead 
of  revelling  in  the  freedom  of  his  own  language  ?  To  walk  on 
a  tight-rope  is  a  wonderful  exhibition  of  skill  and  elicits  the 
admiration  of  the  crowd ;  but  the  fact  remains  that  the  walk- 
ing would  be  done  with  much  greater  success  on  an  ordinary 
road.  Since  Buchanan  deliberately  confined  his  range  of 
expression  to  the  language  which  he  learned  from  the  diligent 
study  of  a  limited  number  of  ancient  authors,  whose  tricks  of 
phrase  and  turns  of  sentence  he  faithfully  reproduces,  he  could 
hardly  avoid  the  danger  of  occasionally  using  a  phrase,  which 
did  not  express  his  real  sentiments  and  which  was  not 
peculiarly  appropriate  to  the  occasion,  but  which  exactly 
echoed  the  ancient  style  or  was  borrowed  unchanged  from  some 
ancient  writer.  The  "  new  wine"  cannot  but  be  spoilt  by  the 
"old  bottle";    and  it  is  no  fault  of  Buchanan  that  his  verses 


Buchanan  as  a  Latin  Scholar  211 

are  somewhat  unpalatable  to  modern  readers,  merely  because 
they  are  written  in  Latin.  No  one,  however,  can  apply  to 
them  Dr.  Johnson's  remark  on  a  woman  preaching:  "it  is  not 
that  the  thing  is  well  done,  but  the  wonder  is  it  can  be  done 
at  all."     For  undoubtedly  the  thing  is  well  done. 

W.  M.  L. 


XXII. 

Buchanan :  Wit  and  Humorist. 

Geoege  Buchanan  has  had  the  singular  fortune  to  be  esteemed 
by  the  commonalty  of  his  native  land — "  the  poor-living,  lewd, 
grimy,  free-spoken,  ribald,  old  Scots  peasant-world,"  to  use  Mr. 
Henley's  contemptuous  and  contemptible  phrase — as  the  anti- 
thesis of  a  man  of  learning.  Robert  Burns,  in  his  epitaph  on 
William  Cruikshank,  said — 

The  fauts  he  had  in  Latin  lay  ; 
and  by  writing  for  Europe  Buchanan  hid  his  light  in  a  dark 
lantern,  so  far  as  Scotland  was  concerned.  His  vernacular 
tractates  served  their  political  and  temporary  purpose  and  were 
forgotten;  the  part  he  played  in  history  was  not  sufficiently 
striking  to  command  popular  attention ;  and  his  memory  was 
only  saved  to  the  man  in  the  street  by  a  publication  that 
reflected  little  credit  upon  him  and  did  no  justice  to  his  merits. 

During  his  lifetime  Buchanan  attained  considerable  fame  as 
a  wit  and  humorist.  His  sallies  against  the  Church  were  supple- 
mented by  gossipy  anecdotes  of  his  everyday  existence.  His  en- 
counters with  the  King  are  just  the  kind  of  incidents  of  royal  life 
that  are  retold  in  conversation  to-day,  or  served  up  in  the  personal 
columns  of  the  modern  newspaper,  and  it  is  reasonable  to  believe 
that  they  would  pass  from  lip  to  lip  and  reach  an  ever-widening 
circle  of  his  contemporaries  and  immediate  successors.  In  time 
his  name  became  a  by-word  for  wit  and  humour.  Good  stories 
that  were  narrated  of  nobody  in  particular  were  associated  with 
Buchanan ;  and  generations  that  had  forgotten  or  never  heard 
of  him  as  a  scholar  recognised  and  admired  him  as  a  jester. 

The  floating  and  uncertain  popularity  which  he  enjoyed  for 
wit  and  humour  was  fixed  to  some  extent  when  the  stories 
attributed  to  him  were  collected  by  some  illiterate  hand  and 
woven  into  a  chap-book.  The  identity  of  the  editor  has  not 
been  established,  but  there  is  a  belief  that  the  compilation  was 


Buchanan  :   Wit  and  Humorist  213 

the  work  of  Dougal  Graham,  the  hunchback  bellman  of  Glasgow 
and  rhyming  historian  of  the  '45,  who  figures  so  prominently 
in  the  cheap  literature  of  a  byegone  day.  Graham,  who  was  as 
coarse  and  grotesque  as  the  Buchanan  of  the  chap-book,  died  in 
1779,  and,  if  he  is  responsible  for  collecting  the  stories,  the  pub- 
lication probably  made  its  first  appearance  about  1770.  It  gave 
permanency  to  anecdotes  that  had  lingered  in  oral  tradition 
for  nearly  two  hundred  years,  but  it  doubtless  contains  only 
a  fragment  of  the  gossip  that,  with  the  name  of  Buchanan,  had 
circulated  among  the  common  people  of  Scotland. 

Dr.  Robert  Wallace  who  in  his  unfinished  sketch  of  the 
Historian's  life  refers  at  some  length  to  the  chap-book,  says  that 
' '  its  description  of  Buchanan  as  the  '  Fule  '  instead  of  the  tutor 
of  King  James,  and  its  placing  him  at  the  English  court  of 
James,  who  did  not  ascend  the  throne  of  England  until 
Buchanan  had  been  twenty-one  years  dead,  are  sufficient  com- 
mentary on  its  historical  accuracy."  Dr  Wallace,  who  may  have 
written  from  memory,  is  less  than  just  to  the  booklet.  It  states 
that  though  Buchanan  was  ' '  of  mean  parentage,"  he  ' '  made 
great  progress  in  learning"  and  that  "for  his  understanding 
and  ready  wit  he  excelled  all  men  then  alive  in  his  age,  that  ever 
proposed  questions  to  him."  Further,  it  affirms  that  Buchanan 
"  was  servant  or  teacher  to  King  James  the  VI.,  and  one  of  his 
private  counsellors  "  but  that  publicly  he  "  acted  as  his  fool." 

The  nature  of  the  stories  of  which  the  chap-book  is  composed 
ensured  a  wide  circulation  for  the  brochure,  and  during  the 
century  after  its  publication  it  was  in  great  demand. 
Buchanan  became  the  hero  of  the  bothy.  The  greatest 
Scotsman  of  his  age  was  deposed  from  the  exalted 
position  which  he  held  as  a  scholar  and  reduced  to  the 
level  of  unlettered  ploughmen  who  laughed  uproariously 
over  his  escapades,  and  who  recognised  in  the  buffoon  of  the 
chap-book  a  spirit  kindred  with  their  own.  It  is  certainly  a 
curious  coincidence  that  the  British  Solomon  who  was  described 
by  a  French  wit  as  "  the  wisest  fool  in  Christendom  "  should 
have  received  much  of  his  wisdom  at  the  feet  of  a  genius  who 
was  only  known  to  the  vast  majority  of  his  countrymen  as  "  the 
King's  jester." 

When  we  come  to  enquire  how  far  "  The  Witty  and  Enter- 
taining Exploits  of  George  Buchanan "  may  be  accepted  as 
authentic  we  are  naturally  led  to  consider  those  examples  of  his 


214  Buchanan  :   Wit  and  -  Humorist 

wit  and  humour  which  are  preserved  in  repositories  other  than 
the  chap-book.  All  Buchanan's  biographers  enliven  their  pages 
and  illustrate  their  subject  with  anecdotes  believed  to  be  genuine. 
Dr  Hume  Brown,  it  is  true,  is  extremely  cautious  in  this  respect, 
and,  when  he  cites  Mackenzie,  is  careful  to  add  that  that  author 
"  is  always  to  be  taken  with  large  reservations."  Mackenzie, 
however,  "  quotes  chapter  and  verse  "  so  far  as  his  anecdotes  are 
concerned,  and  that  is  all  that  can  be  reasonably  asked  from  any 
writer  who  does  not  profess  to  have  actually  heard  what  he 
narrates. 

Throughout  the  chap-book  Buchanan  is  represented  as  having 
indulged  in  considerable  freedom  of  speech  and  action  towards 
his  royal  master,  and  to  that  extent  at  least  it  is  historically 
accurate.  As  tutor  to  the  king  he  was  brought  into  close  touch 
with  James,  and  two  anecdotes  bear  witness  that  the  preceptor 
showed  no  special  favour  to  his  sovereign  pupil. 

On  one  occasion  the  youthful  monarch  cast  envious  eyes  upon 
a  tame  sparrow  which  belonged  to  his  companion  John, 
Master  of  Mar.  After  pleading  in  vain  with  Mar  to  part  with 
the  bird,  James  endeavoured  to  take  it  by  force,  and  in  the 
struggle  which  ensued  the  pet  sparrow  was  killed.  Erskine's 
grief  at  the  loss  of  his  favourite  attracted  the  attention  of 
Buchanan  who  enquired  into  the  reason  for  his  sorrow.  On 
being  informed,  the  tutor  seized  the  king,  boxed  his  ears,  and 
told  him  that  "  he  was  himself  a  true  bird  of  the  bloody  nest  to 
which  he  belonged."  The  incident  helps  to  render  credible  the 
more  famous  instance  of  Buchanan's  chastisement  which.  Dr. 
Wallace  says,  "  was  better  known  in  Scotland  "  than  any  other 
story. 

In  the  course  of  his  readings  in  history  James  had  learned 
the  fact  of  the  conspiracy  at  Lauder  Bridge  in  the  reign  of 
James  III.,  and  had  been  informed  of  how  the  Earl  of  Angus 
became  known  as  "  Bell-the-Cat."  Lessons  over,  the  King  and 
his  fellow-pupil.  Mar,  engaged  in  play,  but  were  so  noisy  that 
Buchanan,  who  was  at  his  studies,  was  disturbed.  He  enjoined 
them  to  be  quiet,  and,  finding  that  James  disregarded  his 
request,  the  tutor  informed  him  that  if  he  did  not  desist  he 
would  certainly  be  whipped.  The  king,  with  a  precocious  touch 
of  that  cleverness  and  conceit  which  characterised  his  later  life, 
looked  at  Buchanan  and  asked  ' '  But  who  will  '  Bell  the  Cat '  ?" 
Buchanan  threw  his  book  from  him  and  gave  the  young  king  a 


Buchanan :    Wit  and  Humorist  215 

sound  thrashing.  The  cries  of  distressed  royalty  brought  the 
Countess  of  Mar  on  the  scene  who  demanded  the  cause  of  the 
tears.  The  preceptor  explained,  whereupon  she  asked  how  he 
dared  "  to  lay  his  hands  on  '  the  Lord's  anointed  '."  Buchanan's 
answer  is  not  for  polite  ears  in  these  decorous  days,  but  there 
are  few  Scotsmen  who  are  unfamiliar  with  it. 

The  story  got  abroad — Buchanan  himself  may  have  narrated 
the  incident  with  quiet  humour  and  twinkling  eyes  to  some  of 
his  boon  companions — and  it  was  enjoyed  by  courtiers  and 
plainer  folk.  For  some  unexplained  reason  it  does  not  appear 
in  the  chap-book :  the  omission  is  culpable.  Aikman  in  retail- 
ing the  anecdote  remarks  that  he  gives  it  "on  the  authority  of 
Dr.  Mackenzie,  who  bore  no  goodwill  to  Buchanan  and  who  was 
an  idolater  of  royalty,"  a  circumstance  which,  one  should  think, 
would  have  suggested  its  suppression.  "  That  Buchanan  did 
inflict  corporal  chastisement  on  the  boy,"  adds  Aikman,  "  there 
is  no  reason  to  doubt ;  if  he  saw  it  necessary,  he  was  not  the  man 
to  be  scared  by  any  imaginary  sacredness  of  royal  skin,  but  thalt 
he  returned  so  rude  an  answer,  is  not  at  all  likely."  Language 
is  rude  only  by  comparison,  and  what  is  permissible  to-day  might 
appear  unseemly  in  another  age.  Buchanan's  remark  amounted 
merely  to  a  proverbial  expression  which  is  common  enough 
yet  in  many  parts  of  the  country  and  which,  with  a  very  slight 
modification,  may  be  heard  among  the  lower  classes  all  over  the 
British  Isles.    And  the  common  people  imitate  their  "  betters  "  ! 

If  there  is  virtue  in  chastisement  it  is  evident  from  the  stories 
that  have  come  down  to  us  that  James  had  every  opportunity  of 
becoming  a  good  man.  When  he  was  free  of  the  watchful 
eye  of  Buchanan,  he  was  under  the  surveillance  of  his 
companion,  the  Master  of  Mar, — "Jock  o'  the  sclaits,"  as 
he  was  called  by  the  king  from  the  fact  that  the  tutor,  with  char- 
acteristic humour,  gave  him  a  slate  upon  which  to  record  all  the 
royal  misdeeds  committed  during  Buchanan's  absence ! 

Another  anecdote  illustrates  in  a  different  manner  the  freedom 
which  Buchanan  took  with  his  sovereign  master.  It  is  given  on 
the  authority  of  the  tutor's  nephew.  The  royal  dominie  in 
studying  the  mind  and  actions  of  his  pupil,  noticed  that  James 
was  inclined  to  grant  every  request  that  was  made  to  him,  and 
he  set  himself  to  endeavour  to  correct  this  weakness.  He  pre- 
pared two  documents  which  he  put  before  the  king  for  signature. 
Without  examining  them,  and  after  merely    asking    a    careless 


216  Buchanan  :   Wit  and  Humorist 

question  concerning  their  purport,  James  appended  his  name. 
One  of  the  writs  nominated  and  appointed  Buchanan  King  of 
Scotland  for  fourteen  days.  The  tutor  at  once  assumed 
sovereignty.  James  was  amazed  and  demanded  an  explanation, 
whereupon  Buchanan  produced  the  document  in  his  favour 
which  had  duly  received  the  royal  signature.  According  to  Dr. 
Hume  Brown  the  master  read  his  pupil  "  a  lecture  on  the  folly 
of  his  conduct,"  but  judging  from  James's  later  career  the  lecture 
did  little  good.  This  incident  forms  one  of  "the  witty  and 
entertaining  exploits  "  of  the  chap-book. 

Through  life  Buchanan  continued  to  speak  plainly  to  the  king, 
and  in  the  hour  of  death  was  not  afraid  of  his  sovereign  power. 
An  anecdote,  variously  told,  illustrates  this.  Dr.  Macmillan 
says  that  when  Buchanan  was  on  his  deathbed  the  authorities 
summoned  him  ' '  to  answer  for  something  objectionable  in  his 
writings,  but  he  was  unmoved.  '  Tell  the  people  who  sent  you,' 
was  his  reply  to  the  macer  of  the  Court  of  Session  who  came  on 
the  errand,  '  That  I  am  summoned  to  a  higher  Tribunal '." 
The  chap-book  shifts  the  locality  of  the  story  to  Court. 
Buchanan  had  been  absent  from  the  royal  presence,  and  on  the 
king's  commanding  him  peremptorily  to  return  within  twenty 
days,  failing  which  officers  would  be    sent    to    fetch    him,    he 

replied  :  — 

My  honoured  liege  and  sovereign  king 
Of  your  boasting  great  I  dread  nothing : 
On  your  feud  or  favour  I'll  fairly  venture  : 
Ere  that  day  I'll  be  where  few  kings  enter. 

There  is  something  of  a  heroic  chuckle  in  these  lines  that  is 
in  keeping  with  the  death-bed  remark  which  is  preserved  in 
Melville's  "  Diary."  The  Melvilles,  James  and  Andrew,  had 
crossed  from  St.  Andrews  to  Edinburgh  to  see  Buchanan.  In 
the  course  of  conversation,  talk  turned  to  his  History  which  was 
then  in  the  printer's  hands.  The  Melvilles  saw  a  proof  and 
noticed  the  story  which  alleged  that  Mary  Stuart  had  ordered 
Rizzio's  body  to  be  laid  in  her  father's  tomb.  They  suggested 
that  it  might  offend  the  king.  "  Tell  me,  man,"  queried 
Buchanan,  ' '  giff  I  have  tauld  the  treuthe  ?"  They  said  they 
believed  so.  "  Then!"  exclaimed  the  dying  man,  "  I  will  bide 
his  feud,  and  all  his  kin's."  The  story  in  the  chap-book  is  pro- 
bably founded  on  this  conversation  and  on  the  anecdote  concern- 
ing Buchanan's  summons  to  the  Court  of  Session. 


Buchanan  :   Wit  and  Humorist  217 

Another  of  the  witty  and  entertaining  exploits  of  the  king's 
fool  is  clearly  based  on  an  incident  in  Buchanan's  life  which, 
according  to  Dr.  Hume  Brown  "  has  all  the  marks  of  truth,  as 
he  certainly  knew  Gaelic,  and  as  the  humour  of  the  story  is 
thoroughly  characteristic."  During  his  wanderings  in  France, 
Buchanan  met  a  woman  who  affirmed  that  she  was  devil-ridden, 
and,  as  a  proof,  stated  that  she  could  speak  in  all  tongues. 
Among  other  languages  he  tested  her  with  Gaelic  which  she  did 
not  understand,  whereupon  he  protested  that  the  Devil  was 
ignorant  of  the  common  speech  of  Celtic  Scotland— a  circum- 
stance which  does  not  favour  the  perfervid  Highlanders'  belief 
that  Gaelic  was  spoken  in  Eden.  There  is  more  humour  in  the 
chap-book  version.  Buchanan,  according  to  the  story  there, 
was  in  conversation  with  a  Bishop,  in  the  course  of  which  he 
emphasised  the  superior  value  of  Scottish  over  English  educa- 
tion, aflBrming  that  shepherds  in  Scotland  would  "  argument 
with  any  Bishop  in  England,  and  exceed  them  mighty  far  in 
knowledge."  So  preposterous  did  this  vaunted  triumph  of  the 
Thistle  over  the  Rose  appear  that  an  Ecclesiastical  Commission 
was  appointed  to  enquire  into  the  matter.  Three  clergymen  set 
out  for  Scotland,  but  they  presumably — in  the  words  of  a  later 
ballad — took  "the  high  road,"  while  Buchanan  took  "the  low 
road,"  as  he  was  in  Scotland  before  them.  In  the  guise  of  a 
shepherd  he  met  the  clergymen.  To  a  question  in  French  he 
returned  an  answer  in  Hebrew,  and  when  this  was  followed  by 
a  statement  in  Greek  he  replied  in  Flemish.  Then  they  tried 
him  with  Dutch  and  he  responded  in  Gaelic  which  was  unintel- 
ligible to  them  and  they  "  went  away  shamefully,  swearing  that 
the  Scots  had  gone  through  all  the  nations  in  the  world  to  learn 
their  language,  or  the  devil  had  taught  them  it,"  which  latter 
remark  may  please  the  enthusiastic  Celts  who  affirm  that  Adam 
and  his  good  lady  conversed  in  their  mother  tongue. 

Many  of  the  extravagant  fables  that  connect  themselves  with 
Buchanan  are  doubtless  due  to  his  enemies.  Dr.  Hume  Brown 
says  that,  "as  in  the  case  of  every  Protestant  of  eminence, 
foolish  stories  came  to  be  circulated  by  Roman  Catholic  writers 
concerning  the  Historian's  last  days."  One  shameless  libel  from 
the  pen  of  a  French  priest  who  laboured  to  prove  Buchanan  to 
have  been  a  debauchee  and  a  drunkard  represents  him  as  saying 
on  his  death-bed  in  answer  to  the  upbraidings  of  his  medical 
advisers — "  '  Go  along  with  you!     You,  and  your  prescriptions 


218  Buchanan  :   Wit  and  Humorist 

and  dietaries!  I  would  far  rather  live  oply  three  jolly  weeks, 
getting  comfortably  drunk  every  day  than  live  six  dreary  wine- 
less  years.'  ...  He  died  in  brief  space,  however;  his 
chamber  being  then  rarely  littered  with  glasses  and  wine- 
measures."  Vastly  different  from  this  is  the  genial  domestic 
scene  depicted  by  the  Melvilles.  Buchanan  was  suffering  much 
bodily  weakness  at  the  time  they  visited  him.  "  When  we  cam 
to  his  chalmer  "  says  the  narrator,  "  we  fand  him  sitting  in  his 
chaire,  teatching  his  young  man  that  servit  him  in  his  chalmer 
to  spell  a,  b,  ah;  e,  h,  eh,  etc."  After  salutation,  one  of  his 
visitors  said,  "  I  see,  sir,  ye  are  nocht  ydle."  "  Better  this," 
answered  Buchanan  with  quiet  humour,  "  nor  stealing  sheipe  or 
sitting  ydle,  quhilk  is  als  ill." 

Buchanan's  fondness  for  a  jest  never  deserted  him.  In  a  racy 
letter  to  Randolph,  "  Maister  of  Postes,"  he  said,  after  referring 
to  his  History  upon  which  he  was  engaged;  "The  rest  of  my 
occupation  is  wyth  the  gout,  quhilk  holdis  me  besy  both  day  and 
nyt.  And  quhair  ye  say  ye  haif  not  lang  to  lyif,  I  traist  to 
God  to  go  before  you,  albeit  I  be  on  fut  and  ye  ryd  the  post." 

A  touch  of  grim  humour  characterises  his  final  interview  with 
his  servant.  "  When  Buchanan  was  dying,"  according  to  the 
story  which  Mackenzie  tells  in  his  Lives  of  the  Scots  Worthies, 
"  he  called  Mr.  Young,  his  servant,  and  asked  him  how  much 
money  he  had  of  his ;  and  finding  that  it  was  not  sufficient  for 
defraying  the  charges  of  his  burial,  he  commanded  him  to  dis- 
tribute it  among  the  poor."  On  hearing  this  Mr.  Young  asked, 
"  Who,  then,  will  be  at  the  expense  of  burying  you?"  "  I  am 
very  indifferent  about  that,"  was  the  characteristic  answer  of 
"the  stoic  philosopher  who  looked  not  far  before  him,"  "for 
if  I  am  once  dead  and  they  will  not  bury  me,  they  may  let  me 
lie  where  I  am,  or  throw  my  corpse  where  they  please."  Of 
course,  as  he  knew,  adds  Dr.  Wallace  by  way  of  commentary 
on  the  anecdote,  the  people  of  Edinburgh  "  had  to  bury  him, 
so  he  could  enjoy  his  posthumous  triumph  of  wit,  but  they  had 
their  repartee,  denying  him  a  gravestone  for  a  generation  or 
two." 

In  the  Somnivm  and  Franriscnmts  Buchanan  gives  free  play 
to  his  wit  and  humour  at  the  expense  of  the  Church,  and  the 
author  of  these  satires  might  quite  well  be  the  hero  of  one  or 
two  of  the  witty  and  entertaining  exploits  narrated  in  the  chap- 
book.     In   Frnnrismniis  he  shows  the  nature  of  the  men  who 


Buchanan  :   Wit  and  Humorist  219 

join  the  monkish  fraternity.  Biting  lines  reveal  to  what  per- 
fection they  have  brought  the  art  of  imposition,  and  the  flashing 
search-light  of  the  poet's  wit  exposes  them  entrenched  behind 
all  the  tricks  of  their  profession.  In  these  circumstances,  no 
great  stretch  of  imagination  is  needed  to  identify  the  author  of 
the  satire  with  the  George  Buchanan  who  disclosed  the  impos- 
ture of  the  Dalkeith  priests  by  fearlessly  striking  the  bell  which 
they  asserted  would  rend  itself  at  the  touch  of  a  guilty  person. 
Similarly,  the  man  who,  in  literature,  laughed  at  the  abuses  of 
the  Church,  flung  scornful  jests  in  the  faces  of  ecclesiastics  and 
did  not  hesitate  to  turn  his  wit  against  Popes  might  reasonably 
be  the  hero  of  another  of  the  chap-book  stories.  The  anecdote 
is  to  the  effect  that  once  when  Buchanan  was  in  Versailles  he 
met  the  King  of  France  who  had  heard  that  he  was  a  very  witty 
and  ingenious  man.  The  monarch  accompanied  him  to  a  picture 
gallery  and  shewed  him  a  representation  of  Christ  on  the  Cross, 
"You  know  what  that  represents?"  queried  the  King,  but 
George  answered  that  he  did  not.  "  Why,  then,"  continued  the 
monarch,  "  I'll  tell  you.  It  is  a  picture  of  our  Saviour  on  the 
Cross,  and  that  on  the  right  is  a  portrait  of  the  Pope,  while  this 
on  the  left  is  my  own."  "  I  humbly  thank  your  majesty  for  the 
information,"  said  Buchanan,  "  for  though  I  have  often  heard 
that  our  Saviour  was  crucified  between  two  thieves,  I  never 
knew  who  they  were." 

In  his  Popular  Rhymes  of  Scotland  Dr.  Robert  Chambers 
includes  a  verse  which,  he  says,  is  commonly  "  understood  to  be 
the  composition  of  no  less  distinguished  a  man  than  George 
Buchanan."  After  referring  to  the  vulgar  belief  that  that 
learned  preceptor  was  the  king's  fool — "a  mere  natural,  but 
possessed  of  a  gift  of  wit  which  enabled  him  to  give  very 
pertinent  answers  to  impertinent  questions  " — Chambers  says  that 
Buchanan  was  once  asked  what  could  buy  a  plough  of  gold  and 
he  immediately  answered — 

A  frosty  winter,  and  a  dusty  March,  a  rain  about  April, 
Another  about  the  Lammas  time,  when  the  corn  begins  to  fill, 
Is  weel  worth  a  pleuch  o'  gowd,  and  a'  her  pins  theretill. 

There  is  much  truth  in  the  rhyme.  A  season  falling  just  as 
described  in  the  verse  would  doubtless  produce  a  good  harvest 
which  is  not  over-estimated  in  value  by  a  golden  plough  ' '  and  a' 
her  pins  theretill." 


220  Buchanan  :   Wit  and  Humorist 

Dr.  David  Irving  writes  that  Buchanan's  "conversation  was 
alternately  facetious  and  instructive"  and  that  "his  wit  and 
humour  are  still  proverbial  among  his  countrymen."  The  few 
examples  of  his  facetiae  which  have  descended  to  us  form  a 
basis  much  too  slender  to  support  any  such  statement,  and  they 
must  therefore  be  regarded  as  but  fragments  of  a  mass  of  their 
kind  that  has  been  all  but  forgotten.  The  wit  and  humour 
which  he  displayed  in  his  works  were  in  great  measure  lost  to 
that  large  number  of  his  countrymen  who  knew  little  English 
and  less  Latin,  and  his  celebrity  must  have  been  derived  from 
something  other  than  the  mirth  of  his  satires  or  the  sparkle  of 
his  epigrams. 

Translators  have  done  their  best  to  convey  samples  of 
Buchanan's  literary  wit  and  humour — if  the  word  may  be  used 
to  distinguish  them  from  the  wit  and  humour  that  survive  in 
anecdote — to  his  countrymen.  Some  of  his  epigrams  have  been 
excellently  rendered  by  Dr.  Hume  Brown.  The  scholar  was 
never  in  affluent  circumstances  and  from  time  to  time  he  is 
found  supplicating  royalty  for  monetary  assistance.  And  he 
usually  does  so  with  a  flash  of  wit  or  a  touch  of  quiet  humour. 
The  following  lines,  which  we  quote  in  Dr.  Brown's  translation, 
were  addressed  to  Mary  Stuart ;  they  ' '  are  supposed  to  be  accom- 
panied by  copies  of  verses  :  " — 


I  give  you  what  I  have, 
I  wish  you  what  I  lack  ; 

And  weightier  were  my  gift 
Were  fortune  at  my  back. 

Perchance  you  think  I  jest  ? 

A  like  jeat  then  I  crave  : 
Wish  for  me  what  I  lack, 

And  give  me  what  you  have. 


To  similar  purpose  he  addressed  the  Earl  of  Moray  at  a  later 
date.  One  of  his  verses  to  the  good  Regent  has  been  rendered 
thus — 

It  is  more  blest,  saith  Holy  Writ, 

To  give  than  to  receive  ; 
How  great,  then,  is  your  debt  to  me, 

Who  takd  whato'er  you  ^ive  I 


Buchanan  :   Wit  and  Humorist  221 

and  another  in  these  terms — 

Niggard  and  laggard  came  my  gift,  you  say, 
Then  must  I  deem  your  duty  clear  indeed  ; 

By  good  example  this  my  fault  amend  : 

Let  thy  gift  come  with  bounty  and  with  speed. 

The  gout  that  held  him  "  besy  both  by  day  and  nyt "  received 
playful  reference  in  a  begging  epigram  which  he  addressed  to 
the  Earl  of  Lennox.  The  verse  is  as  follows,  and  once  more  the 
translation  is  Dr.  Brown's  :  — 

Since  I  am  poor  and  you  are  rich. 

What  happy  chance  is  thine  ! 
My  modest  wishes,  too,  you  know — 

One  nugget  from  your  mine  ! 
Only,  whatever  be  your  gift, 

Let  it  not  be  your  gout : 
TkoU, — a  meet  present  for  your  leech, — 

I'd  rather  go  without. 

Possibly  the  best  known  of  Buchanan's  epigrammatic  verses 
is  that  on  Pontiff  Pius.  For  the  moment  he  ceased  to  jibe  at 
Franciscans  and  other  small  fry  and  directed  his  wit  against 
their  infallible  chief.     "  Heaven,"  he  said  of  Pius — 

Heaven  he  sold  for  money. 

Earth  in  death  he  left  as  well, 
What  remains  to  Pontiflf  Pius  ? 

Nothing  that  I  see  but  hell. 

Pius  may  have  been  the  impenitent  thief  in  the  trio  which, 
according  to  the  chap-book,  Buchanan  saw  in  the  art  gallery 
in  France. 

While  the  industry  and  genius  of  the  translator  have  brought 
a  measure  of  the  wit  and  humour  of  his  verse  within  reach  of 
the  general  reader,  a  full  appreciation  must  always  be  denied  to 
those  who  are  ignorant  of  Latin.  As  a  consequence,  his  reputa- 
tion for  mirth,  where  it  depends  on  something  other  than  the 
venacular,  must  be  a  concession,  on  the  part  of  the  majority,  to 
the  opinion  of  the  scholar.  But  apart  from  his  poems  many 
things  combine  to  shew  him  a  genial,  kindly,  and  humorous  soul. 
One  description  that  has  been  given  to  us  says  that  he  was 
' '  austere  in  face  and  rustic  in  his  looks,  but  most  polished  in 
style  and  speech,  and  continually,  even  in  serious  conversation, 
jesting  most  wittily."     Others  tell  us  that  he  was  "  rough-hewn 


222  Buchanan  :   Wit  and  Humorist 

in  his  person,  behaviour,  and  fashion,  seldom  caring  for  a  better 
outside  than  a  rugge-gown  girt  close  about  him,"  and  that  he 
was  of  "  gud  religion  for  a  poet."  He  was  a  bachelor  who 
yearned  not  for  the  uncertain  joys  of  matrimony,  and  who 
bantered  his  friend  Randolph  on  his  foolhardiness  in  marrying 
a  second  time: — "  After  having  been  delivered  of  ane  wyfe  to 
cast"  himself  "in  the  samyn  nette " !  These,  and  other 
sentences  that  might  be  quoted,  bring  before  the  mind  an 
"honest  Scot"  who  looked  abroad  upon  life  with  a  merry 
twinkle  in  his  eyes,  and  who  was  not  afraid  to  denounce  the 
hypocrisy  that  he  met  at  every  turn.  He  attacked  the  in- 
sincerity of  his  time  and  if,  as  in  later  years  was  the  case  with 
Burns,  he  painted  with  a  broad  brush  and  produced  canvases 
that  to  some  minds  may  appear  indelicate  rather  than  witty, 
and  coarse  rather  than  humorous,  it  should  be  remembered  to 
his  credit  that  contemporary  evidence  is  available  in  plenty  to 
prove  that  he  did  not  exaggerate.  Inferentially,  and  by  a  refer- 
ence to  modern  life,  the  charge  of  obscenity  that  is  sometimes 
made  against  him  may  be  held  to  be  unfounded.  No  man  who 
occupies  in  our  day  a  position  similar  to  that  held  by  Buchanan 
in  his,  and  who  desired  to  ridicule  some  aspect  of  the  life 
around  him  could  afford  deliberately  to  transgress  the  limits  of 
decorum.  What  is  rude  to  us  may  not  have  been  coarse  in  a 
ruder  age,  just  as  the  partisan  cartoons  of  our  time  which  are 
said  to  win  and  lose  seats  at  St.  Stephen's  might  appear  vulgar 
and  even  indecent  to  a  generation  that  had  acquired  other  tastes 
in  pictorial  politics. 

"  Latin,"  says  Dr.  Hume  Brown,  "  lost  him  that  place  in 
the  hearts  of  his  countrymen  which  his  genius  and  intensely 
Scottish  type  of  character  must  certainly  have  assured  him," 
and  (it  may  be  added)  rendered  the  work  of  the  chap-book 
writer  possible.  In  time  his  scholarship  came  to  be  a  mere 
tradition  among  the  great  mass  of  the  people  who  appreciated 
the  only  side  of  his  genius  they  could  understand  as  that  was 
depicted  for  them  in  the  all-but-mythical  "  witty  and  entertain- 
ing exploits,"  and  who  were  too  ignorant  of  history  or  too 
undiscerning  to  see  anything  incompatible  in  the  right  reverend 
Moderator  of  the  General  Assembly  of  the  Kirk  of  Scotland 
being  also  the  King's  "  Fule."  It  is  true  that  George  Mac 
Gregor  tells  how  many  of  the  Scottish  people  believed  "  there 
were  two  Scotsmen  who  bore  the  name  of  George  Buchanan," 


Buchanan  :   Wit  and  Humorist  223 

one  of  whom  was  the  jester  and  the  other  the  scholar,  but  it  is 
doubtful  if  such  a  belief  ever  found  much  credence  outside  the 
boards  of  MacGregor's  book.  Dyce  makes  the  suggestion  that 
Buchanan  was  confounded  with  Archie  Armstrong,  and  supposes 
that  several  of  the  ' '  witty  exploits  originated  in  the  sayings  and 
doings  of  "  that  jester,  but  none  of  the  stories  credited  to  the 
Latinist  in  the  chap-book  are  told  of  the  Border  sheep-stealer 
in  the  "  Banquet  of  Jests  and  Merry  Tales  "  except  the  conun- 
drum as  to  the  difference  between  a  Scot  and  a  sot,  and  that,  as 
Dr.  Wallace  points  out,  is  a  mediaeval  chestnut. 

Ridiculous  as  the  transformation  was,  Buchanan  is  not  alone 
in  having  been  so  treated  by  posterity.  Michael  Scott  of  Bal- 
wearie  lives  in  popular  imagination  as  a  wizard  rather  than  as 
a  philosopher;  Gervase  of  Tilbury  gravely  described  Virgil  as  a 
mighty  sorcerer;  and  in  Palestrina,  in  Italy,  Horace  is  still 
credited  with  having  worked  magical  wonders.  Strange  stories 
of  some  of  Buchanan's  contemporaries  are  in  circulation.  Knox 
was  credited  with  powers  from  hell ;  and  if  Nicol  Burne  and 
other  Roman  Catholic  writers  and  gossips  had  found  a 
sympathetic  editor  we  might  have  had  a  chap-book  on  "  The 
Weird  and  Wonderful  Exploits  of  John  Knox,  commonly  called 
the  Scottish  Deil."  Nearer  our  own  day,  we  find  this  strange 
literary  transformation  of  historic  personages.  Little  more  than 
a  century  ago  Paul  Jones  was  similarly  treated.  A  few  days 
after  the  pirate's  death  a  pamphlet  was  published  with  the 
startling  title — "Paul  Jones;  or.  Prophecies  on  America, 
England,  France,  Spain,  Holland,  etc.,  by  Paul  Jones,  a 
Prophet  and  Sorcerer  such  as  never  lived  heretofore  " !  The 
indecent  stories  and  vulgar  verses  attributed  without  foundation 
to  Burns  doubtless  prove  witty  and  entertaining  to  many  people, 
but  are  wholly  unworthy  of  the  poet's  genius,  and  afford  only  a 
hideous  reflection  of  the  man. 

The  growth  of  the  Buchanan  chap-book  is  easy  of  explanation. 
As  has  been  shown,  some  of  the  stories  are  versions  of  authenti- 
cated anecdotes.  These,  with  the  tradition  that  the  scholar  was 
a  wit  and  a  humorist,  gave  the  compiler  a  beginning,  and  pro- 
bably led  him  to  search  for  other  stories  about  his  hero.  No 
sense  of  historic  accuracy  moved  him  to  enquire  as  to  the 
credibility  of  the  anecdotes  he  gleaned  from  oral  sources ;  any- 
thing was  good  enough  that  was  calculated  to  raise  a  laugh. 
Mirth  was  what  his  public  demanded,  and  its  provision  was  all 


224  Buchanan  :  Wit  and  Humorist 

that  concerned  him.  Ere  long  he  succeeded  in  his  purpose.  The 
stoic  philosopher  was  destined  to  make  sport  for  the  Philistines, 
and,  invested  with  the  cap  and  bells  of  a  fool,  he  took  his  place 
in  the  chapman's  wallet  alongside  Lothian  Tom,  and  Paddy 
from  Cork.  "  At  first  sight,"  writes  Dr.  Wallace,  "  one  might 
imagine  that"  the  collection  "had  been  put  together  by  an 
enemy  of  Buchanan,  but  its  brutish  zeal  in  holding  up 
Buchanan  as  a  desperately  clever  fellow  who  was  continually 
turning  the  tables  and  raising  a  laugh  against  people  who  wished 
to  take  him  off,  and  who  were  generally  English,  and  often 
English  nobles,  bishops  or  other  clergy,  shows  that  it  was 
earnest  in  its  admiration  according  to  its  dim  and  dirty  lights." 
The  decay  of  chap-book  literature  has  done  something  to 
restore  Buchanan  to  his  rightful  place  in  history.  For  at  least 
a  generation  he  has  ceased  to  be  a  jester  to  any  great  extent, 
and  his  witty  and  entertaining  exploits  are  fast  being  forgotten. 
Those  that  are  not  positively  indecent  have  become  associated 
with  other  men  notorious  for  humour,  and  in  this  way  survive 
for  the  delectation  of  later  readers.  Stories  that  made  "the 
rafters  dirl  "  a  century  ago  when  told  of  Buchanan  now  provoke 
mirth  as  they  are  narrated  of  Watty  Dunlop  of  Dumfries  or 
Robert  Shirra  of  Kirkcaldy.  Thousands  have  enjoyed  the 
humour  of  Buchanan's  observation  to  the  French  King  in  the 
art  gallery  three  hundred  and  fifty  years  ago  ;  in  a  recent  volume 
of  Scottish  anecdote  the  reader  is  assured  that  the  conversation 
took  place  between  Bishop  Murdoch  of  Glasgow  and  ' '  Hawkie  " 
the  gangrel,  and  the  incident  is  set  forth  with  a  wealth  of  local 
colour  and  pictorial  embellishment  that  almost  defies  criticism ! 
Verily,  in  modern  collections  of  Scottish  humour  there  are 
stories  "  both  good  and  new,  but  what  is  good  is  not  new,  and 
what  is  new  is  not  good." 

W.  H. 


XXIII. 

The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan. 

In  addition  to  many  prints,  framed  and  in  books,  the 
exhibition  in  the  University  Library  contained  eight  oil 
paintings  of  Buchanan.  One  of  these  is  the  property  of  the 
University  of  St.  Andrews,  two  were  lent  by  the  University  of 
Aberdeen,  two  by  the  University  of  Edinburgh,  one  by  the 
Buchanan  Society,  one  by  the  Duke  of  Sutherland,  and  one  by 
George  A.  Buchanan,  Esq.,  Cawder  House,  Bishopbriggs. 
Perhaps  on  no  previous  occasion  have  so  many  portraits  of 
Buchanan  been  brought  together,  and  a  better  opportunity 
afforded  for  a  comparative  study  of  his  portraiture.  Other 
paintings  of  him  are  known  to  be  in  existence,  but  there  were 
either  difficulties  in  the  way  of  getting  them  brought  to  St. 
Andrews,  or  their  authenticity  was  too  doubtful  to  make  it 
worth  while  to  borrow  them.  There  is  indeed  room  for  reason- 
able doubt  as  to  the  genuineness  of  some  of  those  exhibited. 
Nor  is  this  to  be  wondered  at  when  it  is  borne  in  mind  that 
the  portraits  of  Buchanan's  great  contemporary,  John  Knox, 
have  given  rise  to  much  discussion  and  difference  of  opinion, 
and  that  no  authentic  portraits  at  all  of  such  men  as  Andrew 
Melville  and  Samuel  Rutherford  are  known  to  exist.  That 
Buchanan  was  painted  by  more  than  one  artist  in  his  later 
years,  may  be  taken  for  granted ;  but  there  appears  to  be  no 
absolute  certainty  that  any  one  of  the  existing  portraits  was 
actually  painted  from  life. 

The  oldest  portraits  exhibited  were  those  lent  by  the 
University  of  Edinburgh.  One  of  these  is  painted  on  a  wooden 
panel  measuring  19J  inches  in  height  by  12  inches  in  width. 
The  picture  itself  gives  no  clue  to  its  date  nor  to  the  name  of 
the  artist  who  painted  it.  It  has  been  in  the  possession  of  the 
University  from  time  immemorial  and  it  certainly  looks  old 
enough  to  be  a  contemporary  portrait.  Buchanan  is  repre- 
sented as  an  old  and  rather  sad  looking  man,  wearing  a  black 
Q 


226  The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan 

gown,  large  white  collar,  and  close-fitting  black  skull-cap,  with 
a  roll  of  paper  in  his  right  hand.  This  painting  has  generally 
been  accepted  as  an  authentic  picture,  and  has  been  selected  by 
Mr.  James  L.  Caw  for  reproduction  in  his  excellent  series  of 
"  Scottish  Portraits."'  The  other  Edinburgh  University 
portrait  is  painted  on  canvas  and  purports  to  represent 
Buchanan  at  the  age  of  73,  but  it  has  not  the  appearance  of  a 
contemporary  portrait.  The  head  is  not  unlike  that  of  the 
older  picture,  but  the  eyes,  nose,  mouth  and  beard  differ,  and 
altogether  the  face  is  much  less  pleasing.  Buchanan  appears 
to  be  seated  behind  a  desk  or  lecture-table,  and  is  wearing 
a  coat  or  gown  with  fur  collar  and  facings.  In  his  right 
hand  he  holds  an  open  book;  his  left  hand  rests  on  the  desk, 
and  the  fingers  of  both  hands  are  spread  out  in  a  stiff  and 
awkward  manner,  reminding  one  of  Carlyle's  phrase,  "  a  tied- 
up  bundle  of  carrots  supporting  a  kind  of  loose  little  volume," 
in  his  description  of  Beza's  portrait  of  Knox. 

The  Aberdeen  University  portraits  are  evidently  enlarged 
and  uniform  copies  of  the  Edinburgh  ones.  By  themselves  they 
make  a  most  interesting  pair,  but  they  do  not  contribute 
anything  to  the  original  portraiture  of  Buchanan.  The  small 
head  in  the  possession  of  the  Duke  of  Sutherland  has  apparently 
no  known  history.  It  is  painted  on  wood  and  appears  to  have 
been  well  done,  but  it  shows  signs  of  blistering  and  will  soon 
require  to  be  carefully  restored.  A  full  front  face  is  shown, 
with  rather  small  eyes,  short  nose  and  stunted  beard.  It  is 
probably  a  copy  of  the  Porbus  portrait  to  be  afterwards 
mentioned. 

The  paintings  belonging  to  the  University  of  St.  Andrews 
and  to  the  Buchanan  Society  introduce  another  type  of 
Buchanan  portraiture  about  which  there  is  considerable 
dubiety.  The  University  portrait  was  purchased  at  Edinburgh 
in  1884  in  the  belief  that  it  was  either  by  or  after  Titian.  It 
is  painted  on  wood,  and  was  then  in  a  rather  faded  condition, 
but  has  since  been  renovated.  The  "Titian"  portrait  of 
Buchanan  appears  to  have  been  first  heard  of  in  the  beginning 
of  the  nineteenth  century  and  was  discovered  by  David, 
eleventh  Earl  of  Buchan.  His  Lordship  is  said  to  have  been 
very  proud  of  his  discovery  and  had  the  portrait  engraved  as  a 
frontispiece  to  the  "  Philosophical  Magazine,"  edited  by 
Alexander  Tilloch,  vol.  34,  July-Dec.  1809.     It  is  stated  to  be 

'  Bee  Frontispiece. — Ed. 


Fdfsniiili'  of  /III'    Wooilriil   in    "  l.rx    I'ortmi/.^  dm  Jloiiuiit.^ 


The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan  227 

engraved  by  T.  Woolnoth  at  Edinburgh  "  from  the  original 
picture  by  Titian  in  the  possession  of  the  Earl  of  Buchan." 
There  is  no  reference  to  it  in  the  text  of  the  volume.  In  July 
of  the  following  year  the  Earl  of  Buchan,  through  the  Earl  of 
Kelly,  presented  a  framed  copy  of  the  engraving  to  the 
University  of  St.  Andrews,  where  it  is  still  preserved  in  the 
University  Library.  The  "original  picture  by  Titian"  has 
disappeared  and  cannot  now  be  traced.  It  is  just  possible  that 
it  is  the  same  as  that  now  in  possession  of  the  University,  but 
there  is  no  proof  either  one  way  or  the  other.  The  University 
picture  could  scarcely  be  a  copy  of  the  Earl  of  Buchan's,  for 
in  its  original  state  it  had  the  appearance  of  having  been 
painted  long  before  1809.  It  certainly  bears  a  close 
resemblance  to  Woolnoth's  engraving  and  belongs  unques- 
tionably to  the  "  Titian  "  type. 

The  portrait  lent  by  the  Buchanan  Society  was  specially 
painted  for  the  Society  by  Sir  Henry  Raeburn  and  is  known 
to  be  a  copy  of  the  portrait  of  Buchanan  then  in  the  possession 
of  the  Earl  of  Buchan.  Writing  from  Edinburgh  on  13th 
December  1814  to  Mr.  Archibald  Buchanan,  Glasgow,  Sir 
Henry  announced  that  the  portrait  had  been  sent  off  carefully 
packed.  "Lord  Buchan,"  he  added,  "is  of  opinion  that  the 
original  was  painted  by  Titian.  I  am  not  well  enough 
acquainted  with  the  history  of  George  Buchanan  to  be  able  to 
say  whether  he  had  an  opportunity  of  being  painted  by  that 
Master,  but  it  is  not  unlike  his  style,  and  at  all  events  is  an 
excellent  picture.  I  have  been  at  great  pains  to  make  the  copy 
like,  and  I  hope  the  Society  will  be  pleased  with  it." 
Raeburn's  picture  is  a  very  much  finer  piece  of  work  than  the 
University  one,  and  if  copied  from  it,  or  from  another  one  like 
it,  must  have  undergone  considerable  improvement  in  the 
process.  But  the  question  arises,  is  it  a  portrait  of  Buchanan 
at  all  ?  Unfortunately,  Lord  Buchan's  judgment  was  not 
always  to  be  relied  upon,  and  it  has  long  been  current  that  the 
' '  original  picture  by  Titian "  in  his  possession  was  not  a 
portrait  of  Buchanan,  but  of  M.  le  President  Pierre  Jeannin 
(1540-1622)  finance  minister  to  Henry  IV.  of  France.  There 
is  certainly  a  striking  resemblance  between  Woolnoth's  engrav- 
ing of  Buchanan  and  the  engraving  of  M.  Jeannin  as  it  appears 
in  Perrault's  "  Hommes  Illustres,"  published  at  Paris  in  1696. 
Titian   (1477-1576)   was  much  older  than  either  Buchanan  or 


228  The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan 

Jeannin,  but  he  was  for  a  time  their  contemporary  and  might 
have  painted  either  or  both  of  them.  Meanwhile  proof  is 
lacking  that  either  gave  sittings  to  the  great  Italian  painter; 
and  whether  or  not  Lord  Buchan  mistook  a  portrait  of 
Jeannin  for  one  of  Buchanan,  the  balance  of  evidence  appears 
to  be  against  his  Lordship's  picture  being  a  genuine  portrait  of 
the  Scottish  humanist.' 

In  connexion  with  the  Titian  portrait,  mention  may  be 
made  of  two  curious  framed  drawings  exhibited  by  the  Faculty 
of  Advocates.  The  one  represents  "  the  upper  part  of  the  head 
of  Buchanan  by  Titian  in  the  collection  of  the  Earl  of  Buchan 
with  a  view  to  compare  with  the  skull  of  that  learned  man  " ; 
while  the  other  is  an  "  exact  representation  of  what  remains 
of  the  skull  believed  to  be  that  of  the  learned  George  Buchanan, 
the  historian  and  poet,  which  was  taken  out  of  his  grave  in  the 
Greyfriars  Kirkyard  at  Edinburgh  about  fifty  years  after  his 
decease  and  is  exhibited  in  the  museum  of  the  University  of 
Edinburgh."  Both  drawings  were  made  by  Alexander 
Chisholm  in  March  1816  and  are  signed  "  Buchan."  The 
comparison  was  probably  made  in  the  hope  of  dispelling  doubt 
as  to  the  genuineness  of  his  Lordship's  discovery.  Front  and 
side  views  of  Buchanan's  skull,  drawn  and  engraved  by  W.  and 
D.  Lizars,  Edinburgh,  were  published  by  William  Blackwood 
in  1815,  and  may  be  seen  in  the  second  edition  of  Irving's 
"  Memoirs  of  Buchanan  "  (1817). 

The  large  painting  belonging  to  Mr.  George  A.  Buchanan 
is  one  of  the  series  of  Scottish  historical  pictures  painted  by  the 
late  James  Drummond,  R.S.A.,  Edinburgh.  It  represents 
Buchanan  teaching  young  King  James  the  Sixth  in  the  Palace 
at  Stirling  in  presence  of  the  Countess  of  Mar  and  her  little 
boy  and  girl.  The  grouping  and  technique  of  the  picture  are 
excellent,  and  the  artist's  conception  of  the  learned  pedagogue 
is  very  satisfactory,  although  the  picture  was  painted  long 
before  he  had  made  a  special  study  of  the  portraiture  of  Knox 
and  Buchanan. 

'  The  renaming  of  old  portraits  is  a  praotioo  of  long  standing  and  still  goes 
on.  At  the  opening  of  Queen's  College,  Belfast,  a  portrait  bearing  the  in- 
scription "  Georgius  Buohananus  "  was  presented  to  the  College  by  its  arohiteot, 
Mr.  Lynn.  About  fifty  years  afterwards,  when  it  was  found  necessary  to 
entrust  the  picture  to  a  restorer,  it  was  disoovered  that  it  had  been  tampered 
with,  and  that  it  was  really  the  portrait  of  a  German  clergyman  named 
Johannes  Carolus, 


I'OR'I'RAITS   OF   BUCHANAN. 


CoUected  at  Si.  Airh-eirs,  Jvly  lUmi 


The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan  229 

The  accompanying  plate  shows  at  one  view  the  group  of 
these  eight  portraits  as  exhibited  in  the  Senate  Room.  It  will 
be  at  once  noticed  that  there  are  at  least  three  distinct  types 
of  portraits.  There  are  first  of  all  the  two  Edinburgh 
University  portraits  (of  which  the  Aberdeen  University  ones 
are  copies)  representing  Buchanan  in  extreme  old  age. 
Although  differing  in  detail,  these  two  portraits  may  be  classed 
together  as  they  have  a  general  resemblance  to  each  other. 
Then  there  is  the  Duke  of  Sutherland's  portrait  (which  may  be 
taken  along  with  Mr.  Buchanan's)  in  which  the  poet  and 
historian  appears  as  a  somewhat  younger  man.  Lastly,  there 
are  the  two  so-called  Titian  portraits,  in  which  Buchanan  is 
perhaps  shown  at  a  still  earlier  period  of  his  life.  ^ 

Turning  now  to  the  engravings,  the  oldest  that  has  been 
discovered  is  that  contained  in  part  III.  of  the  "  Icones 
Virorum  Illustrium "  of  Jean  Jacques  Boissard,  published  at 
Frankfort  in  1598.  Boissard  was  not  an  artist  himself,  and  the 
engravings  in  his  book  are  chiefly  the  work  of  Theodore  de  Bry, 
whose  sons  continued  and  completed  it,  and  bestowed  upon  its 
originator  the  title  of  "  Antiquariorum  nostri  seculi  facile 
princeps."^  But  Boissard  was  Buchanan's  contemporary  and 
outlived  him  a  good  many  years  (1528-1602),  and  may 
have  had  little  difficulty  in  obtaining  the  use  of  an 
original  portrait  for  reproduction  in  so  important  a  work 
as  the  "Icones."  As  the  engraving  represents  Buchanan 
at  the  age  of  76,  it  is  clear  that  it  must  have  been 
taken  from  a  portrait  painted  in  Scotland  shortly  before  his 
death.'      The   Boissard   engraving   has   much   in  keeping   with 

^  In  the  plate  the  two  Edinburgh  portraits  are  shown  resting  on  chairs, 
with  the  Duke  of  Sutherland's  portrait  between  them.  The  large  picture  in 
the  centre  is  Mr.  Buchanan's,  with  the  Aberdeen  portraits  on  either  side. 
Above  are  the  two  "Titian"  portraits,  the  one  with  the  label  being  the 
property  of  the  University  of  St.  Andrews,  and  the  other  the  property  of  the 
Buchanan  Society.  The  production  of  this  plate,  in  spite  of  much  care,  has 
not  been  quite  successful,  but  the  position  of  the  portraits  in  the  Senate  Room 
made  it  difficult  for  the  photographer  to  obtain  a  satisfactory  negative. 

2  The  portrait  of  Buchanan  is  marked  "  P.  C.  H.  f."  It  is  diflferent  in  style 
and  setting  from  all  the  rest  and  has  evidently  been  engraved  by  another 
hand. 

*  Irving  ("  Memoirs,"  1817,  p.  309)  says  that  Buchanan  "  expired  a  short 
while  after  five  o'clock  in  the  morning  of  Friday,  the  twenty-eighth  of  Sep- 
tember 1582,  at  the  age  of  seventy-six  years  and  nearly  eight  months."  It 
is  just  possible,  however,  that  he  may  have  been  a  year  younger.      I  drew 


230  The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan 

the  later  Edinburgh  University  portrait,  except  that  the  hands 
and  book  are  wanting.  The  attire  is  very  similar,  but  the 
features  are  rather  more  strongly  marked.  It  cannot  be 
described  as  an  attractive  portrait.  Still  it  is  full  of  character, 
and  taken  in  conjunction  with  the  older  Edinburgh  University 
painting,  may  be  regarded  as  a  fairly  accurate  likeness  of 
Buchanan  in  his  old  age.  The  same  portrait,  on  a 
much  smaller  scale,  with  the  face  greatly  altered 
and  looking  the  opposite  way,  was  used  by  Dr.  Paul 
Preher  in  his  "  Theatrum  Virorum  Eruditione  Clarorum," 
published  at  Nuremberg  in  1688,  and  it  has  been 
reproduced  with  more  or  less  exactness  in  various  subsequent 
publications.  It  forms  the  frontispiece  to  Professor  Hume 
Brown's  Life  of  Buchanan  (1890)  and  also  to  the  Rev.  Dr. 
Donald  Macmillan's  (1906).  It  appeared  as  a  small  wood-cut 
in  Anderson's  "Scottish  Nation"  (1862);  and  in  a  slightly 
enlarged  form  it  illustrates  the  Rev.  J.  Rolland  McNab's 
article  on  Buchanan  in  "Morning  Rays"  for  July  1906.  In 
Garnett  and  Gosse's  "  English  Literature,"  vol.  2  (1903),  there 
is  a  small  portrait  of  Buchanan  "from  an  old  engraving"  of 
the  Boissard  type,  but  with  the  face  turned  the  other  way. 

The  next  most  typical  engraving  is  that  used  as  a 
frontispiece  to  the  first  edition  of  the  English  translation  of 
Buchanan's  Rerum  Scoticarum  Historia,  published  at  London  in 
1690,  in  folio.  It  was  engraved  by  Robert  White,  and 
purports  to  be  from  the  original  preserved  in  the  museum  of 
Dr.  Thomas  Povey.  The  same  plate,  folded,  was  issued  with 
the  second  and  third  editions  of  this  translation  published 
respectively  in  1722  and  1733,  in  octavo.  It  is  a  bust  giving  a 
full  face  view  of  Buchanan,  who  is  robed  in  a  black  gown 
buttoned  down  the  front,  and  wears  a  large,  white,  folded 
collar.  The  head  is  high  and  bald,  and  the  face  somewhat 
stolid  and  expressionless.  A  very  similar  portrait  was  engraved 
by  Jacobus  Houbraken,  of  Amsterdam,  in  1741,  from  a  painting 
by  Francis  Porbus  in  the  collection    of    Dr.    Mead ;    and    still 

attention  to  this  more  than  a  year  ago,  but  at  the  suggestion  of  Professor  Hume 
Brown  I  agreed  not  to  raise  the  question  of  the  exact  date  of  Buchanan's  birth 
in  connexion  with  the  Quater-Centenary  Celebration,  which  had  by  that  time 
been  fixed  for  1906.  But  as  the  question  has  since  been  discussed  elsewhere, 
it  may  not  bo  amiss  to  mention  here  that  there  are  good  grounds  for  arguing 
that,  according  to  modern  reckoning,  Buchanan's  birth-year  was  1507  and  not 
1506. 


GEORGE    BUCHANAN. 

[Frotn  Boissard.\ 


By  kind  permission  of  Mr.  G.  A  .  Morton,  Publisher,  Edinhiirgh. 


The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan  231 

another  was  engraved  by  Edward  Scriven  in  1833  for  Charles 
Knight's  "  Gallery  of  Portraits,"  "  from  a  picture  by  Francis 
Pourbus,  senior,  in  the  possession  of  the  Royal  Society,"  and 
reprinted  on  a  smaller  scale  in  the  fourth  volume  of  his  "Cabinet 
Portrait  Gallery  of  British  Worthies "  (1845),  and  again  in 
"  Old  England's  Worthies  "  (1847).  The  same  portrait  has  also 
been  engraved  by  J.  B.  Bird,  and  appears  in  Anderson's 
"  Scottish  Nation  "  (1862)  and  elsewhere.  As  engraved  by  W. 
Penny  the  Porbus  portrait  assumes  a  somewhat  different  form. 
The  face  is  longer  and  thinner  and  Buchanan  is  shown  seated  in 
a  high-backed  chair  with  his  hands  resting  upon  a  large  book 
lying  open  across  his  knees.  This  plate  has  been  used  to 
illustrate  Dr.  Wy lie's  quarto  edition  of  the  "  Scots  Worthies" 
published  by  Mackenzie. 

Unhappily  the  Porbus  (or  Pourbus)  portrait  is  no  more 
authentic  than  the  others.  There  is  no  proof  whatever  that 
this  Flemish  artist  was  ever  in  Scotland  and  no  certainty  that 
Buchanan  visited  the  Continent  at  a  time  when  Porbus 
(who  died  in  1581)  could  have  painted  him.  There  is 
of  course  Ruddiman's  statement  ("  Anticrisis,"  1754,  p.  139) 
that  he  had  heard  it  related  a  hundred  times  that 
Buchanan,  when  Principal  of  St.  Leonard's  College  at 
St.  Andrews,  without  acquainting  any  of  his  friends  of  it, 
did  make  a  voyage  to  France.  If  the  many  stories  of 
this  voyage  could  be  substantiated  by  a  single  reliable 
document,  the  Porbus  portrait  would  acquire  additional 
interest,  in  St.  Andrews  at  all  events,  as  it  would  show  what 
manner  of  man  Buchanan  was  during  his  residence  there. 

Some  degree  of  authority  is  lent  to  the  Porbus  portrait  by 
the  fact  that  it  has  been  followed  in  all  the  editions  of 
Buchanan's  Poemata  printed  in  Holland,  viz.,  1628 
(Leyden,  Elzevir') ;  1641  (Amsterdam,  Jansson) ;  1676  (Am- 
sterdam, Elzevir);  1687  (Amsterdam,  Wetsten).  These  are  all 
medallion  portraits  drawn  on  a  very  small  scale.  Mr. 
Drummond  was  of  opinion  that  they  agreed  with  Boissard's 
head,  but  they  agree  even  more  with  Porbus's.  They  are  all 
full  face,  the  head  is  bald  or  nearly  so,  they  show  the  same 
collar  and  very  nearly  the  same  gown— two  having  buttons  and 

'  An  enlarged  photographic  reproduction  of  the  portrait  in  this  edition 
appears  in  M.  Ernest  GauUieur's  "Histoire  du  College  de  Guyenne,"  Paris, 
1874. 


232  The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan 

two  not.  The  frontispiece  of  another  edition  of  the  Poemata 
published  at  Amsterdam  in  1665,  "  apud  Joannem  a  Waeaberge 
et  Elizeum  Weyerstraet,"  shows  Buchanan  seated  at  a  table, 
on  which  is  placed  a  small  writing  desk.  He  holds  a  pen  in  his 
right  hand,  and  his  face  is  turned  to  the  spectator.  It  shows  a 
head  resembling  in  some  points  both  the  Boissard  and  Porbus 
types,  but  the  gown  and  collar  belong  to  the  latter.  In  none 
of  these  five  engravings  is  there  any  appearance  of  fur. 

Among  other  examples  of  the  Porbus  type  of  portrait 
(which  has  been  the  most  popular  among  book  illustrators)  the 
following  were  among  the  exhibits :  — An  undated  print 
engraved  by  A.  Bell  and  inserted  in  Sibbald's  "  Commentarius 
in  vitam  Georgii  Buchanan!  "  (1702),  but  probably  not  issued 
with  that  work ;  another  undated  print,  apparently  of  the 
eighteenth  century,  without  the  name  of  the  engraver ;  the 
elaborate  frontispiece  engraved  by  Van  der  Gucht  for 
Ruddiman's  edition  of  Buchanan's  Works  (1715),  which 
introduces  a  small  portrait  of  the  Porbus  type,  but  influenced 
to  some  extent  by  the  Boissard  or  Edinburgh  type ;  the  frontis- 
piece to  the  edition  of  the  Historia  published  by  Paton  at 
Edinburgh  in  1727,  engraved  by  R.  Cooper;  the  fourth  and 
sixth  editions  of  the  English  translation  of  the  Historia 
(1751  and  1766),  giving  a  new  version  of  the  Porbus  portrait 
engraved  by  T.  Phin ;  the  frontispiece  to  Robertson's  "Life 
of  Buchanan "  (1812) ;  the  frontispiece  to  the  edition  of 
the  Historia  in  English,  published  in  1827  and  again 
in  1843,  giving  an  engraving  by  "  H.  Meyer  from  a 
painting  by  P.  Pourbus."  The  same  portrait — sometimes  from 
the  same  plate  or  block — has  also  done  duty  in  Hume  Brown's 
"Buchanan  and  his  times"  (1906),  the  quater-centenary 
edition  of  Wallace  and  Campbell  Smith's  sketch  of  Buchanan 
written  for  the  "  Famous  Scots  Series,"  and  in  various 
periodical  publications  issued  within  the  last  few  months.  A 
very  good  undated  print  was  lent  by  Lt.-Col.  Playfair,  St. 
Andrews,  taken  "  from  the  original  by  F.  Porbus,  late  in  the 
Mead  collection." 

Quite  a  different  type  of  portrait  forms  the  frontispiece  to 
the  seventh  edition  of  the  English  translation  of  the  Historia, 
published  at  Glasgow  in  1799.  It  was  engraved  by  K. 
Makenzie,  London,  from  an  original  picture  in  Anderson's 
Institution,  Glasgow.     This  picture  is  now  in  the   possession  of 


j>,i-^y->"^ 


M  "^^ich  ana 


n 


^X-^  v-( 


^-/^..     .5;/. 


(From  Pourbus.) 


^ 


The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan  233 

the  Glasgow  and  West  of  Scotland  Technical  College,  and  a 
copy  of  it  belongs  to  Dr.  Freeland  Fergus,  Glasgow.  Its 
authenticity,  however,  is  so  open  to  question  that  it  was  not 
thought  worth  while  to  include  it  in  the  exhibition  of  paintings. 
It  represents  Buchanan  as  a  younger  man  than  any  of  the 
others  and  is  not  devoid  of  resemblance  to  the  Porbus  portraits. 
Another  portrait,  not  unlike  this  Glasgow  one,  is  given  in 
Pinkerton's  "  Scottish  Gallery,"  1799,  Vol.  1,  plate  17.  It  is 
described  as  "  from  an  original  at  Hamilton,"  and  is  lettered 
"  Buchaniae  Comes  delt.  E.  Harding  sc.  Published  Novr. 
1,  1797,  by  I.  Herbert."  In  the  notice  of  Buchanan  it  is  said 
"  The  portrait  is  in  the  Duke  of  Hamilton's  house  at 
Hamilton :  and  is  the  only  one  which  represents  Buchanan  when 
young.  It  is  probably  genuine ;  but  its  authenticity  is  supposed 
to  rest  on  tradition  only."  Drummond^  calls  it  "an  absurd 
head,"  but  it  had  evidently  at  one  time  found  favour  with  the 
Earl  of  Buchan. 

The  older  Edinburgh  University  portrait  was  engraved  by 
T.  Woolnoth  for  the  second  edition  of  Irving's  "  Memoirs  of 
Buchanan "  (1817) ;  and  ten  years  later  it  was  engraved  by 
R.  Scott  for  Aikman's  translation  of  the  Historia.  In  1854 
it  appeared  in  Chambers's  "  Biographical  Dictionary  of 
Eminent  Scotsmen,"  engraved  by  Samuel  Freeman.  As  already 
remarked,  it  has  more  recently  been  included  in  Mr.  Caw's 
"  Scottish  Portraits."  It  is  this  portrait,  sometimes  looking  one 
way,  sometimes  another,  which  has  been  associated  with  the 
cover  and  title-page  of  "  Blackwood's  Magazine"  since  its  com- 
mencement in  1817. 

Engravings  similar  to  the  later  Edinburgh  University 
portrait  (with  hands  and  book  introduced)  have  been  published 
more  than  once.  The  earliest  exhibited  was  an  undated 
engraving,  which  some  previous  owner  of  a  copy  of  the  1583 
edition  of  the  Historia  has  inserted  as  a  frontispiece.  It 
bears  to  have  been  painted  by  I.  C.  W.  and  engraved  by 
C.  van  Sichem.  Another  version  of  it,  by  Ja.  Clark, 
is  given  in  Mosman's  edition  of  the  Historia  published  at 
Edinburgh  in  1700.       In  these  engravings    the    age    has    been 

'  In  "  The  portraits  of  John  Knox  and  George  Buchanan,"  Edinburgh, 
1875,  reprinted,  with  additions,  from  the  "  Transactions  of  the  Antiquarian 
Society."  To  this  critical  and  suggestive  paper  are  appended  lists  of  engrav- 
ings of  Buchanan.  It  also  gives  excellent  reproductions  of  the  Boissard  and 
Porbus  portraits. 


234  The  Portraits  of  George  Buchanan 

changed  from  73  to  76,  making  it  the  same  as  in  the 
Boissard  engraving.  The  bust  in  the  frontispiece  to  Burman's 
edition  of  the  Of  era  Omnia  (1725)  follows  the  same  type, 
with  skull-cap  and  fur  collar,  but  omits  the  hands  and  book. 

Among  the  illustrations  in  Chambers's  "  Cyclopaedia  of 
English  Literature,"  vol.  1  (1901),  there  is  a  picture  of 
Buchanan  (setatis  76,  an.  1581)  "  from  the  portrait  in  the 
National  Portrait  Gallery."  It  belongs  to  the  Edinburgh  type, 
but  differs  in  several  respects  from  those  already  described. 
Buchanan  is  represented  standing  at  a  small  covered  table,  with 
his  left  hand  resting  upon  it.  In  his  right  hand  is  an  open 
book  from  which  he  looks  pensively  away.^ 

The  ' '  Titian  "  portrait  does  not  appear  to  have  been  re- 
engraved  or  reissued  since  1809. 

'  The  painter  of  this  portrait  is  unknown.  It  is  a  small  picture,  measur- 
ing 13J  by  11 J  inches,  and  was  transferred  to  tlie  National  Portrait  Gallery 
from  the  British  Museum  in  June  1879. 

J.  M.  A. 


From  the  Painting   in  the  National  Portrait  Gallery,  London. 


XXIV. 

Buchanan  Memorials. 

A  statement  was  recently  made  in  the  columns  of  a  high-class 
literary  weekly  that  Scotland  had  no  worthy  memorial  of 
Buchanan.  Whether  this  remark  was,  in  some  degree, 
significant  of  the  general  lack  of  acquaintance  with  Buchanan's 
life  and  work,  or  whether  it  was  a  mild  criticism  of  the 
indifference  of  Scotsmen  to  the  scholarship  of  their  famous 
countryman,  is  not  quite  certain.  The  latter  probability,  how- 
ever, can  scarcely  be  entertained  by  those  whose  pilgrim  journey 
has  led  them  from  the  busy  haunts  of  men  into  the  peace  and 
quiet  of  the  valley  of  Strathendrick, — into  the  land  of  Buchanan. 
From  far  and  near  there  may  be  seen — towering  from  the  ridge 
on  which  the  village  of  Killearn  stands — a  well-proportioned 
obelisk,  symbolic,  in  its  dignified  isolation,  of  the  place  occupied 
by  the  great  scholar  in  the  memory  of  Scotchmen.  The  people 
of  Buchanan's  native  district  have  always  been  proud  of  his 
learning,  and  near  the  end  of  the  eighteenth  century  a  plan  was 
suggested  by  a  Robert  Dunsmore,  Esq.,^  whereby  a  fitting  and 
permanent  memorial  should  be  raised.  That  gentleman  out- 
lined the  scheme  to  a  large  company  assembled  in  the  house  of 
a  gentleman  of  the  district,  in  which  assemblage  was  Professor 
Richardson,  "  well  known  as  a  successful  cultivator  of  polite 
literature.""  A  subscription  list  was  opened,  to  which  the 
guests  present  on  that  occasion  contributed,  the  share  of  one  of 
them — a  Mr.  Craig,  a  nephew  of  Thomson — being  the 
architectural  design.  The  monument,  which  is  said'  to  have 
been  fashioned  after  the  model  of  that  which  commemorates  the 
Battle  of  the  Boyne,  is  an  obelisk  nineteen  feet  square  at  the 
base,  extends  to  the  height  of  one  hundred  and  three  feet,  and 
is  built  of  white  millstone-grit  which  was  found  at  a  short 
distance  from  the  village.      The  foundation  was  laid  in  June 

'  Irving's  Memoirs,  p.  312. 

^Ibid. 

^  New  Statistical  Account  of  Scotland. 


236  Buchanan  Memorials 

1788  by  one  who  had  taken  a  prominent  part  in  the  movement 
— Rev.  James  Graham,  Minister  of  Killearn  Parish, — and  at 
this  ceremony  a  hermetically  sealed  bottle,  containing  a  silver 
medal  with  the  following  inscription  was  deposited  under  the 
foundation-stone' :  — 

IN   MEMORIAM 

Georgii  Buohanani, 

Poetae  et  Historic)  Celeberrimi : 

Acoolia  hujus  loci,  ultro  oonferentibus, 

Haec  oolumna  posita  est,  1788. 
Jacobus  Craig  Architect.  Edinburgen. 

It  seems,  however,  that  the  monument  was  without  a  visible 
inscription  till  1850,  when  a  marble  tablet,  bearing  the  following 
Latin  eulogium  composed  by  Professor  William  Ramsay  of 
Glasgow  University,  was  inserted  in  the  base :  — 

Memoriae  Aetemae 

GEORGII  BUOHANANI 

Viri 

Inter  Fortes  Fortis 

Inter  Dootos  Doeti 

Inter  Sapientes  Sapientisaimi, 

Qui  Tenax  Propositi, 

Impiorum  sacerdotium  minas  ridens, 

Tyrannorum  saevorum  minas  spernens 

Purum  Numinis  Cultum 

Atque 

Jura  Humani  Generis 

A  Pessima  Superstitione  atque  ab  infima  servitute 

Imperterritus  Vindicavit 

Hoc  Monumentum, 

Domum  Paternam  et  Natalia  Rura  Prospectans, 

Sumptibus  et  Pietate  Popularium 

Olini  Extructum 

Aetas  Postera 

Refieiendum  Curavit, 

Anno  Christi  D.N. 

MDCCCL. 

There  thus  stands,  overlooking  his  ancestral  home  and  the  scene 
of  his  birth,  a  memorial  of  Buchanan's  genius  which  is  in  itself 
a  pillar  of  affection  from  his  fellow-countrymen  and  to  which 
not  a  few  travellers  '  resort  with  veneration  and  enthusiasm.' 
Nor  was  it  erected  without  evoking  approval  and  praise.  Dr. 
David  Doig,  inspired  by  the  loyalty  to  Buchanan  thus  shown, 
'  Nimmo's  Hinlory  of  Slirliiit/.i/ilre  (1st  edit.),  p.  e97. 


Fi-oiii  n  phofijiinrph  bij  Valentine  .(■  S"/is,  Dundee. 

BUCHANAN   MONUMENT   AT  KILLEARN. 


Buchanan  Memorials  237 

wrote  the  following  lines,  which  were  communicated  by  the 
Right  Rev.  Bishop  Gleig  to  Dr.  Irving  who  printed  them  as  an 
Appendix  to  his  Memoirs  :  — 

En  Buchanane  !  pii,  longo  poet  tempore,  oives 
Ingenio  statuunt  haee  monumenta  tuo. 
Sootia  te  natum,  te  Gallia  jaotat  alumnum  ; 
Te  canit  Europe,  qua  plaga  cunque  patet. 
Nil  opus  est  saxo,  nil  indice  :  laeta  aonabunt 
Carmine  Levinium  saecula  cunota  decus. 
Seu  deooras  Latio  divina  poemata  oultu, 
Seu  recinis  nugas,  ludiora,  feata,  sales  ; 
Grandia  seu  tragico  devolvis  verba  cothurno, 
Seu  reseras  varii  claustra  viasque  poll ; 
Aemula  seu  oaptas  Patavi  praeconia  linguae, 
Foedera  dum  patriae,  bella  virosque  refers  ; 
Eloquio,  gravitate,  sono,  vi,  lumine,  verbis 
Aequiparas  veteres,  exsuperasque  novos. 
Quod  Graii  potuere  simul,  quod  Romula  virtus, 
Tu  solus  numeris,  arte,  lepore  potes. 
Sin  aliqua  titubas  patriae  labefactus  amore, 
Aut  nimium  vera  pro  pietate  plus. 
Ipsa  notam  lecti  Libertas  porat  alumni ; 
Ipsa  tegit  lauri  Calliopea  comis. 
Saepe  nitor  veri  spisais  latet  obrutus  umbris, 
Nee  semper  Lynceus  ouncta  videnda  videt. 

The  citizens  of  Edinburgh  had  always  been  fully  cognisant 
of  Buchanan's  ability,  and  they  never  wholly  allowed  his  memory 
to  fade.  One  of  their  number,  and  a  kinsman  of  Buchanan — 
James  Buchanan,  Esq.,  Moray  Place,  and  father  of  the  present 
Member  of  Parliament  for  East  Perthshire — caused  a  Memorial 
Window  to  be  placed  in  the  wall  of  Old  Greyfriars  Church, 
Edinburgh.  This  three-light  window,  which  is  the  last  one  from 
the  pulpit  on  the  south  side  of  the  church,  was  designed  by 
James  Ballantine.  It  contains  in  the  centre  panel  the  portrait 
of  Buchanan  and  the  arms  of  the  Buchanan  family,  as  well  as 
the  following  inscription,  which  forms  the  last  two  lines  of 
Joseph  Scaliger's  laudatory  Elegy  :  — 

Imperii  fuerat  Romani  Sootia  limes : 

Bomani  eloquii  Scotia  finis  erit. 

(Where  Scotland  curbed  the  march  of  conquering  Rome 

The  Latian  Muae  will  find  her  final  home.) 

On  the  other  two  lights  are  imprinted  the  notice : 

"Georgius Buchananus 

Mortuus  est  ....     28  Spt.  1582, 
Edinburgi aetatis  suae  76. " 


238  Buchanan  Memorials 

On  a  disc  on  each  of  the  extreme  panels  there  is  the  St. 
Andrews  Cross  and  the  Scottish  Lion,  with  a  motto  which  is 
occasionally  attributed  to  Buchanan.  This  phrase — nemo  me 
im,pune  lacesslt — was  first  found  on  the  thistle  merks  and  half- 
merks  of  James  VI.  ;  it  is  possible  that  Buchanan  suggested 
its  use,  but  it  was  not  original.  According  to  Dr.  George 
Macdonald,  Honorary  Curator  of  the  Hunter  Coin  Cabinet, 
Glasgow,  a  motto  much  similar  had  been  used  a  hundred  years 
before  in  Italy.  A  similar  criticism  applies  to  the  phrase 
Pro  me  si  m.ereor  in  me,  which  ornamented  the  so-called  '  sword 
dollars'  first  minted  in  1567.  "  Hoc  lemma,"  says  Ruddiman, 
"  (quo  et  suum  adversus  reges  ingenium  prodit)  Georgium 
Buchananum  Jacobi  VI.  praeceptorem  subministrasse  omnes 
consentiunt."'  The  motto  was  certainly  suggested  by  the  saying 
attributed  to  Trajan  by  Dio  Cassius  and  others,  but  no 
authority  can  be  found  for  saying  that  its  use  on  the  coinage 
was  due  to  Buchanan's  advice. 

Scots  abroad,  having  fully  realised  the  reputation  which 
their  countryman  of  a  former  century  had  earned  among  scholars 
throughout  Europe,  have  been  inspired,  no  doubt  by  Buchanan's 
contribution  to  the  national  sentiment  of  independence  and  by 
his  honesty  in  withstanding  the  wrath  of  the  king  "  and  all  his 
Kin's,"  to  aid  in  perpetuating  his  memory.  On  the  12th 
September,  1887,  a  statue  of  Buchanan  was  unveiled  in  the 
Wallace  Monument,  near  Stirling.  It  was  presented  by  the 
Caledonian  Club,  Forte  Wayne,  Indiana,  in  compliment  to  the 
Rev.  Charles  Rogers,  LL.D.  Five  years  afterwards  it  was  to 
the  memory  of  Dr.  Rogers — a  graduate  of  St.  Andrews  and 
for  some  time  Secretary  and  Historiographer  to  the  Royal 
Historical  Society, — that  these  Scotsmen  in  America  presented 
a  bust  to  the  Wallace  Monument  "  to  mark  its  appreciation  of 
his  enthusiasm  for  Scottish  history  and  patriotism." 

A  less  elaborate  but  more  noteworthy  memorial  is  to  be  seen 
in  Greyfriars  Churchyard,  Edinburgh,  where  Buchanan  was, 
according  to  Dr.  David  Laing,  "the  first  person  of  celebrity" 
to  be  buried.  The  history  of  Bticlianau's  last  days  does  not 
redound  to  Scotland's  credit.  He  died  shortly  after  five  o'clock 
in  the  morning  of  Friday,  28th  September,  in  Kennedy's 
Close,  "  first  court  thereof  on  your  left  hand,  first  house  in  the 

1  Andersoni  Selectus  Diplomatum  et  Numiamatum  Scotiae  Thesaurus, 
Edinb.  1739. 


0^m^,: 


MEMORIAL  WINDOW  IN  OLD  GREYFRIAKS  CHURCH, 
EDINBURGH. 


Buchanan  Memorials  239 

turnpike  above  the  tavern  there. "^  He  was  buried  the  next 
day  at  the  city's  expense,  and  Calderwood  records  that  the 
funeral  was  attended  "  by  a  great  company  of  the  faithful." 
Irving  believed  with  a  Mr.  Callender  that  Buchanan's  "  un- 
grateful country  never  afforded  his  grave  the  common  tribute 
of  a  monumental  stone,"  but  the  Records  of  Edinburgh  Town 
Council  give  evidence  that  the  poor  wandering  scholar  who 
had  often  asked  for  bread  and  received  a  stone. ^  In  1701, 
however,  the  stone  could  not  be  seen,  and  the  Council, 
supposing  that  the  stone  had  sunk,  gave  orders  to  the 
Chamberlain  that  it  should  be  raised ;  but  if  this  was  ever  done, 
it  had  again  disappeared  by  1794.  According  to  Dr.  Laing,  the 
stone  was  found  before  1867,  having  been  appropriated  and 
raised  to  the  memory  of  a  grave-digger.  Thus  it  is  certain  that 
no  inscription  had  been  engraved  on  it,  although  Chalmers, 
at  that  time  unaware  of  the  misappropriation  of  the  stone 
and  misinterpreting  a  sentence  in  Sir  Robert  Sibbald's 
Commentarius  in  Vitam  Georgii  Buchanani,  states  in  his  Life  of 
Sucldirrum  that  the  inscription  was  written  by  John  Adamson, 
Principal  of  Edinburgh  University  in  1623.  He  quotes  the 
Adamson  "inscription"  which,  had  he  read  carefully,  would 
have  proved  that  no  words  had  been  engraved  on  the  stone. 
This  Epigram  to  Buchanan's  memory  is  as  follows ;  — 

Marmoreae  cur  stant  hio  omni  ex  parte  columnae, 

Signaque  ab  artificium  daedala  facta  manu  ? 

Ut  spectent  ooulis  monumenta  insignia  vivi, 

Per  quae  defunctis  concilietur  honos. 

Talia  nonne  etiam  debet  Buchananus  habere, 

Doctius  aut  melius  quo  nihil  orbis  habet  ? 

Gloriolas  vivus  qui  contemnebat  inanes, 

An  cupiet  divus  se  decorent  lapides  ? 

lllis  fas  pulchro  nomen  debere  sepulchro, 

Qui  nil  quo  melius  nobilitentur  habent. 

Per  te  olim  tellus  est  nobilitata  Britanna, 

Et  decus  es  tumulo  jam,  Buohanane,  tuo. 

It  was  the  author  of  the  above  epigram  who,  according  to  the 
Librarian  to  the  University  of  Edinburgh  about  1697, 
procured  what  is  supposed  to  be  Buchanan's  skull  and  which 
is  now  preserved  in  the  University  Anatomical  Museum. 

The  spot  where  Buchanan  was  buried  is  not  even  known. 

^From  a  note  by  Oeorge  Paton,   the  antiquary,   and   quoted   by  Prof. 
Hume  Brown,  George  Buchanan,  Humanist  and  Reformer,  p.  353. 
^Ibid.  p.  353. 


240  Buchanan  Memorials 

An  iron  tablet  which  is  aflSxed  to  a  rod  rising  from  the  grass  and 
is  said  to  have  borne  "  a  suitable  inscription,"  is  supposed  to 
mark  the  grave  near  the  north-eastern  boundary,  although  the 
exact  spot  is  considered  by  some  to  be  nearer  the  eastern  wall. 
It  is  more  than  thirty  years  since  this  tablet  was  placed,  at  his 
own  expense,  by  a  humble  blacksmith  named  Ritchie,  who  was 
an  elder  in  New  Greyfriars  Church.  After  his  death  his  son 
carefully  looked  after  the  grave  and  the  tablet,  on  which  the 
letters  of  the  inscription  are  almost  illegible,  although  their 
general  effect  is  "  Geo.  Buchanan,  16th  Centiuy,  interred  in  this 
Churchyard." 

Towards  the  west  end  of  this  '  Scottish  Campo  Santo '  a 
monument  was  erected  by  the  late  Dr.  David  Laing  in  1878. 
This  cenotaph  consists  of  a  large  pedestal  with  bronze  bust  of 
life-size  inserted  in  high  relief.  The  bust,  after  the  Boissard 
engraving,  was  executed  by  D.  W.  Stevenson,  R.S.A.,  who  was 
also  responsible  for  the  bust  in  the  Wallace  Monument.  There 
is  no  inscription,  however,  on  the  monument, — a  defect 
which,  it  is  hoped,  will  soon  be  remedied.  There  ought  also  to 
be  no  objection  to  insert  in  Westminster  Abbey  a  bust  or 
medallion.  "  Buchanan,  Scott,  Burns,  and  Carlyle  are  the 
four  men  of  first-rate  genius  whom  Scotland  has  as  yet 
produced,"  and  Buchanan  and  Carlyle  might  equally  well  be 
commemorated  beside  Scott  and  Burns. 

More  striking,  though  less  substantial,  than  these  monu- 
ments of  "  brass,  glass  or  marble,"  which,  according  to  Irving, 
"  contribute  more  to  the  honour  of  the  living  than  of  the  dead," 
are  the  letters  and  tributes  which  the  acquaintances  of 
Buchanan  wrote  to  him  or  about  him.  Therein  lies  the  revela- 
tion of  his  noble  attributes,  and  he  is  revealed  to  us  as  a  man 
of  generous  and  friendly  disposition.  His  loyalty  to  his  friends 
in  the  hour  of  trial,  his  commemoration  of  the  tender  care  and 
skill  with  which  he  was  cured  of  a  severe  illness,  the  zeal  he 
exhibited  in  the  promotion  and  well-being  of  young  Scottish 
scholars,  his  instructions  that  his  last  savings  should  be  given  to 
the  poor, — all  prove  that  though  his  distinction  as  a  scholar  and 
his  intolerance  of  an  impure  ecclesiasticism  appealed  to  the  head, 
his  judgment  of  men  and  affairs  lean  to  the  charity  that 
emanates  from  a  man  of  such  integrity  and  piety  as  is  none 
the  less  sincere  because  of  its  uneffusiveness.  It  is  sad  to  think 
that  in  his  last  days  the  fame  and  noble  aspirations  of  one  who, 


iMOXU.MKXT    IN    GRP:YFRIAR,S   CHURCHYARD. 


Buchanan  Memorials  241 

by  his  efforts  to  mould  the  thought  of  his  time  and  exchange  the 
bright  glare  of  the  old  for  the  feeble  light  of  the  new  order, 
commanded  the  admiration  of  the  civilised  world  of  his  earlier 
days,  should  only  have  been  understood  by  the  few.  These  few 
did  not  relax  in  their  efforts  to  keep  his  memory  fresh  in  the 
minds  of  the  Europe  of  after  centuries,  for  in  the  words  of 
D.  G.  Barclay,  M.D., 

Eeza  et  Turnebus,  Scaliger  Pater  atqiie  Joseplius 
Te,  Euchanane  !  super  sidera  laude  locant. 
Fruatra  igitur  verbis  famam  detraxerit  ullus 
Nee  Graio  tinctis  Ausoniove  sale.^ 
No  one,  however,  has  celebrated  Buchanan  more  often  and  with 
greater  zeal  than  his  great  colleague  in  the  University  reform 
movement — Andrew    Melville,    one   of    the    most    distinguished 
Principals  of  St.  Mary's  College,  St.  Andrews.     In  congratulat- 
ing him  on  his  recovery  from   a  severe  illness,   Melville  wrote 
some   sympathetic   lines,   of   the   latter   part   of   which   a   close 
translation  is  here  given  :  — 

This  lay  to  thee,  I  say,  I  have  rough-drawn 

Buchanan,  leader  of  the  skilful  Nine  ; 

UnWTOught,  to  till  it  thou  ;  rough,  thou  to  smooth, 

Who  in  thy  single  self  art  match  for  all ; 

As  deals  the  tiller  with  his  up-torn  field, 

Ploughing,  re-ploughing,  ploughing  yet  again — 

Or  as  the  artificer  with  his  hammered  steel, 

Filing  and  polishing  and  perfecting  : 

That,  turned  not  once,  but  turned  again,  again, 

Replaced  upon  thy  anvil,  it  comes  back. 

Not  such  as  the  enfeebled  sisters  can. 

Abated,  thin  of  accent,  void  of  charm. 

But  such  as  in  sound  health  the  Muses  wont. 

Lofty  and  uiighty-toned,  of  charm  supreme.  ^ 

Melville  has  here  addressed  Buchanan  as  his  preceptor  and  the 
parent  of  the  Muses,  "  preceptor  "  not  necessarily  implying  that 
Buchanan  had  been  Melville's  regent,  which  was  hardly 
possible.  Having  come  under  Buchanan's  influence  perhaps  as 
a  private  pupil,  and  having  been  associated  with  him  in  after 
years,  he  felt  moved  at  Buchanan's  death  to  pay  a  tribute  to  the 
great  scholar :  — 

Ergo  silent  magni  Buchanani  in  funere  Musae  ? 

Neo  Vatum  Aonidum  fiet  pia  turba  auum  ? 

An  secum  Buchananus  habet  montem,  unde  Camoenae, 

^  Poetarum  Scolorum  Mniae  Sacrae. 
^  This  translation  is  by  the  Rev.  Archibald  Brown,  minister  of  Legerwood. 
E 


242  Buchanan  Memorials 

Devolvunt  moestos  murmura  tmnca  modos  ? 

An  seoum  Buohananua  habet  fontem,  unde  PoBtae 

Pieriie  poti  coUacrimantur  aquie  ? 

Aonio  frustrk  quaeruntur  vertice  Musae  : 

Castalio  frustr^  e  fonte  petuntur  aquae. 

Pro  monte  est  ooelum,  pro  fonte  est  Chrietus  :  utrumque 

Et  Ohriatum  at  ooelum  nunc  BuchananuB  habet. 

Hausisti  hinc  sacroa  latioes,  Divine  Poeta  ! 

Fudisti  hinc  summo  carmina  digna  Deo. 

Hauriat  hinc  quisquis  Buchanani  in  funere  moeret ; 

Ut  Vatum  fundat  carmina  digna  Deo. 

Turnebe  praised  Buchanan's  great  knowledge  of  Latin,' 
whilst  Beza  and  Scaliger,  whom,  along  with  De  Thou,  the 
scholarly  Casaubon,  in  one  of  his  letters,  calls  "  the  three  suns 
of  the  learned  world,"  have  all  expressed  their  admiration  for 
the  Scottish  '  man-of-letters,'  as  Prof.  Hume  Brown  aptly 
describes  Buchanan.  In  his  correspondence  with  our  great 
humanist,  Beza  describes  him  as  "a  true  lover  of  all  good 
men  " ;  in  the  same  letter  he  beseeches  Buchanan's  blessing  and 
continues  "I,  in  turn,  pray  Him  that  He  may  bless  with 
increasing  blessing  the  happiness  of  your  old  age.^ 

Buchanan's  last  letter  was  addressed  to  Beza,  and  he  there 
mournfully  apologises  "  that  all  my  senses  dying  before  me, 
what  now  remains  of  the  image  of  the  former  man  testifies,  not 
that  I  am,  but  that  I  have  been  alive ;  especially,  as  I  can 
neither  cherish  the  hope  of  contracting  new  intimacies,  nor  of 
continuing  the  old."'  It  was  this  same  sentiment,  conveyed  in 
one  sentence  of  a  letter  to  Vinet  that  especially  appealed  to  De 
Thou  as  being  memorable :  ' '  Nunc  id  unum  satago,  ut  minimo 
cum  strepitu,  ex  inaequalium  meorum,  hoc  est,  mortuus  e 
vivorum  contubernio  demigrem."^  Thus  in  his  closing  days, 
Buchanan's  noble  traits  seem  to  have  come  forth,  and  this  spirit 
of  magnanimity  and  independence,  in  which  Buchanan  left  his 
circle  of  friends  behind,  Joseph  Scaliger  has  realised  and 
expressed  in  Latin  verses  which  have  often  been  quoted,  and  of 
which  something  of  the  sentiment  remains  in  a  translation 
published  by  Robert  Macfarlan,  M.A.,  in  1799.' 

'  Buddiman,  Buchanani  Opera,  Vol.  II.,  p.  104. 
^  Hume  Brown,  Biography,  p.  .342. 
^  Irving'a  Memoim,  p.  280. 
^  Epintola  xxxvii. 

"  Oeorge  Btichanan.  x  Dialogue  conc.emimj  the  Bights!  of  the  Crovm  of  Scot- 
land :  with  two  DiHuertatioiis  prefi.eejl. 


GEORGE  BUCHANAN. 
(From  the,  bust  in   Wallace  Monumtnt.) 

I  kind  periiiinniun  of  Mr.  William  Middleton,  Curator,  Wallace  Monument. 


Buchanan  Memorials  243 

"  The  country  bleat,  Buchanan,  in  thy  fame, 
And  every  region  honouring  thy  name, 
Thou  diest  declining  mad  ambition's  ways. 
To  wealth  superior  and  to  vulgar  praise ; 
Of  Phoebus  and  his  choir  the  favourite  son. 
Who  every  prize  in  every  contest  won. 
The  rare  memorials  of  a  soul  refin'd 
Whioh  in  thy  works  admiring  nations  find, 
No  bard  shall  equal  of  the  Gallick  breed. 
And  of  th'  Italick  none  could  e'er  exceed. 
Raised  to  her  zenith,  poetry  no  more 
Beyond  thee  tries  on  daring  wing  to  soar. 
Bounds  to  her  empire,  Rome  in  Scotland  found. 
And  Scotland,  too,  her  eloquence  shall  bound. " 

Whilst  being  a  man  of  genius  whose  scholarship  and 
brilliant  conversational  powers  endeared  him  to  the  scholars  of 
his  time,  his  simplicity  of  life  and  the  value  he  attached  to 
elevation  of  character  marked  Buchanan  as  ever  and  always  a 
true  Scot.  The  emphasis  he  gave  to  purity  of  life  was  the 
result  of  a  strong  and  burning  patriotism.  For  such  expression 
he  was  made  to  endure  the  stings  of  hostile  criticism ;  this  fact 
and  the  recent  history  of  his  native  country  alike  prove  him 
to  have  been  not  only  a  writer,  but  a  maker,  of  history. 
Having  in  the  evening  of  his  days  repaid  his  native  land  with 
services  which  have  been  so  slightly  acknowledged,  even  by  those 
who  admired  him  as  an  intellectual  aristocrat,  he  well  deserved 
the  tribute  which  was  composed  by  John  Johnston,^  Professor 
of  Hebrew  in  St.  Mary's  College,  1593,  and  differs  somewhat 
from  other  elegies  in  its  reasons  for  praise :  — 

Scotia  quem  genuit,  fovit,  cum  Pallade  Musa 

Diva  beat,  tanto  sese  hospite  Gallia  jactat, 

Ingensque  ingentem  Tellus  miratur  et  Aether, 

Seu  canit  Historiam,  seu  grandi  carmina  plectro  : 

Quem  deoorant  Reges,  qui  ipsos  decorat  quoque  Reges 

Et  Solymse  et  proprise  gentis  :  Quique  entheus  almi 

Facta  Dei,  laudesque  virilm,  qui  sidera  dixit ; 

Eiiguo  magnus  sub  oespite  Buchananus 

Hie  Vates  recubat.     Nomen  viget  alite  fama, 

Atque  orbem  immensum  complet.     .Jamque  arduus  ipse 

Coelum  habet,  et  gaudet  permiatus  Coelitibus  Diis. 

Buchanan  loved  his  country,  and  devoted  his  thoughts  and 

1  Johnston  in  1587  was  studying  at  the  Univerbity  of  Helmstadt,  whence 
he  sent  a  MS.  copy  of  Buchanan's  Sphaera  to  Pincier  who  published  a  second 
edition  of  that  poem,  with  two  epigrams  by  Johnston,  in  1587.— M'Crie's  Life 
of  Andrew  Melville,  p.  153. 


244  Buchanan  Memorials 

earnest  endeavours  to  leave  her  better  than  he  found  her.  He 
made  a  brave  struggle  for  human  freedom,  and  voiced  the  cause 
of  culture  and  progress.  The  spirit  of  his  work  has  never  died, 
and  although  his  reputation  may  not  have  been  so  deeply  rooted 
in  the  hearts  of  his  countrymen  as  that  of  the  other  great  sons 
of  Scotland,  it  is  to  be  hoped  that  in  this  year,  when  four 
hundred  years  have  hurried  into  the  past  since  Buchanan  was 
born,  justice  and  fair-mindedness  will  permit  all  to  estimate 
fully  the  brilliance  of  one  of  the  foremost  of  Scotland's  great 
scholars,  who,  in  words  attributed  to  Andrew  Melville,  was:  — 

Clarus  in  Historiae  campo,  clarusque  Poesi, 

Nomen  ad  aeternos  fers,  Buchanane,  dies. 

Scotia  luce  tua  perfusa  celebrior  audet, 

Rex  disciplinae  gaudet  honors  tuae. 

Maximus  es  mentis.     Quid  Patria  Rexve  rependet, 

Quando  tuia  meritis  hio  sit  et  in  ilia  minor  ?' 

To  these  many  memorials  of  him  who  first  kept  for  Scotsmen 
the  citadel  of  their  fame,  is  added  this  volume.  As  an 
appreciation  of  work  done  and  a  record  of  praise  for  that  work, 
it  is  hoped  that  it  will  be  a  memorial  in  some  small  degree 
worthy  of  one  whose  fate  it  was  to  receive  more  honour  from 
the  nations  among  whom  he  was  a  stranger  than  from  that  in 
which  he  was  born  and  which  rewarded  his  services  with  scanty 
sympathy  and  support.  Time  has  changed  many  opinions,  and 
this  year  of  grace  allows  us  to  read  Buchanan's  writings  in  a 
fresh  and  strong  light,  for  we  must  ever  remember  with  Horace : 

'  Neque  uno  Luna  rubens  nitet  vultu. ' 

'  These  verses  were  written  below  the  dedication  in  M'Crie's  copy  of 
Melville's  Carmen  Mosis.  The  handwriting  is  not  Melville's. — M'Crie's  Life 
of  Andrew  Melville,  p.  42. 

The  Editor. 


To  George  Buchanan  245 

To  George  Buchanan. 

GOOD  old  Buchanan,  my  heart  warms  to  thee, 
So  long  hast  thou  companioned  my  lone  hours ; 
And  I  have  felt  thee  to  be  near  to  me. 

And  pleasant  as  the  breath  of  summer  flowers — 
So  oft  thy  words  of  truth  and  wisdom  stirred 
My  soul,  responsive  to  the  tones  it  heard : 
No  stranger  thou,  far  centuries  apart; 
Thy  speech  was  as  a  friend's,  and  heart  to  heart. 

Thy  voice  is  in  the  silence  of  the  night; 

I  hear  thee  when  all  other  sounds  are  still. 
Upholding  what  is  true  and  just  and  right. 

Sounding  the  sacred  lyre  with  matchless  skill. 

I  honoured  thee  as  patriot,  scholar,  bard — 
Chiefly  as  bard,  of  many  a  varied  lay, 
Wherewith  full  oft  I  have  beguiled  my  way, 

Dreaming  enchanted  dreams  in  daylight  hard ; 

The  shocks  and  troubles  of  the  world  dispelled 

By  the  sweet  spell  wherein  my  soul  was  held. 

What  titles  shall  I  heap  on  thee  to  pay 
The  debt  I  owe  thee,  due  this  many  a  day  ? 
To  thine  own  titlepage  I  turn,  and  there 
Of  academic  titles  find  thee  bare : 
One  title  only  wilt  thou  deign  to  claim — 
I  read  it,  kindling  with  an  inward  flame : 
Instead  of  many  a  letter,  many  a  dot. 
This  only  read  I,  Geoegb  Buchanan,  Scot. 

ScoTUS  !    exclaims  an  old  encomiast. 

Tossing  his  Greek  about  with  airy  sleight; 

Not  thou  art  Skotos,  though  that  name  thou  hast ; 
Not  S/coTos  thou,  but  rather  ExoTia's  light. 

Yet  ScoTus  wert  thou  to  thy  inmost  core ; 

A  patriot  fire  burned  there  with  fervent  heat ; 
And  though  thy  country  drove  thee  from  her  shore, 

And  made  thee  long  the  bread  of  exile  eat, 
Lovedst  thou  still  the  rugged  land  that  bore 

Thy  fathers'  race,  and  sepulchred  their  dust— 

A  land  that  ill  repaid  thy  faith  and  trust, 


246  To  George  Buchanan 

For  thou  art  still  a  banished  man,  denied 
The  harbour  and  the  hearth  of  kindred  Scot: 

Thy  name  may  linger,  but  thy  words  abide 
In  dusty  volumes  which  men  handle  not : 

Thy  name  is  famous  yet,  but  all  beside, 
Save  to  a  dwindled  number,  is  a  blot. 

Yet  greater  son  than  thou  thy  country  ne'er 
Nursed  in  her  bosom  and  sent  forth  to  fame ; 

Born  child  of  genius,  of  endowments  rare. 
The  world  once  echoed  with  thy  lauded  name : 

Now,  the  last  echoes  all  are  fallen  low. 

And  few  there  be  thy  glowing  words  that  know. 

Ephemeral  leaves  in  myriads  strew  the  land ; 

Thine  own  immortal  pages  are  unread — 
Conjured  away  as  by  enchanter's  wand ; 

Unseen  and  unremembered  as  the  dead. 
And  yet  thy  pages  shall  not  die  but  live ; 

There  is  no  death  to  an  immortal  thing : 
Their  root  is  in  the  ground,  and  time  will  give 

New  growth,  new  verdure  and  new  blossoming. 

Thy  glorious  star,  high  in  the  azure  set. 

In  splendour  shone  through  many  lives  of  men : 
Dark  clouds  obscured  it,  and  obscure  it  yet — 

Shall  not  its  lustre  yet  shine  out  again  ? 
Thou  earnest  back  from  thy  long  banishment; 

Shall  thy  long  banished  strains  not  yet  return  ? 
Is  not  the  night  of  thy  neglect  far  spent  ? 

Shall  but  a  loyal  few  revere  thy  urn  ? 

Four  hundred  years  ago  thy  infant  feet 

Trod  the  green  sward  beside  thy  native  stream ; 
And  when  thou  hadst  o'erpast  life's  troubled  dream, 
Old  and  renowned,  they  wrapt  thee  in  thy  sheet, 
And  laid  in  Scottish  soil  and  hallowed  ground, 
Where  many  of  earth's  noblest  sleep  around. 
Rest  well,  beloved  master,  rest  in  peace. 
Where  fame  has  followed,  and  where  troubles  cease. 

A.  B. 


PART  11. 

Poems  and  Translations. 


I. 

Quam  Misera  Sit  Conditio  Docentium  Litcras 
Humaniores  Lutetiae. 

(Elegiarum  Liber — I.) 

In  this  Elegy,  which  is  probably  the  first  of  his  compositions,  Buchanan  gives 
Taluable  information  as  to  student  and  professional  life  in  the  College  of 
Ste.  Barbe,  where  he  taught  for  three  years.  It  was  first  published  at  Paris 
in  1567. 

The  French  translation  or  adaptation  here  given  is  by  Joachim  du  Bellay 
(1525-1560),  who  was  an  Angevin  uf  good  birth.  As  a  French  poet,  he  ranks 
as  one  of  the  best  of  the  celebrated  Pliiade  of  seven  writers  who  in  their  day 
sought  to  shape  French  poetry  on  classical  models.  Some  of  his  smaller 
poems,  one  of  which  Spenser  translated  into  English,  are  very  beautiful. 
Du  Bellay  was  also  a  writer  of  forcible  prose.  The  present  adaptation  is 
taken  from  an  edition  of  his  works  published  at  Paris  in  1568,  a  copy  of 
which  was  found  by  Rev.  R.  M.  Lithgow  in  the  Library  of  the  ancient 
Hermitage  Chapel  of  Saint  Thiago,  Cintra,  Portugal.  In  the  same  volume 
was  a  translation  of  another  of  Buchanan's  poems — Ad  Henricum  II.  Franciae 
Begem  du  salvia  urbis  Mediomatricum  ohsidione.  The  French  poem  here  given 
is  not  wholly  a  translation.  While  Buchanan's  Latin  poem  expatiates  on  the 
misery  of  a  teacher's  life,  du  Bellay  makes  no  reference  to  a  teacher's  life, 
and  takes  as  his  theme  the  misery  of  a  poet's  life.  The  first  fifty-four  are 
faithfully  translated  from  the  first  twenty-eight  lines  of  Buchanan's  Latin. 
Then  du  Bellay  omits  quite  a  large  part  of  the  Latin,  and  interpolates.  The 
lines  beginning  Sept  villes  de  Qrece  are  a  close  translation  ;  these  are  followed 
by  another  interpolation.  A  few  more  lines  are  closely  translated,  and  then 
the  latter  part  is  a  paraphrase  of  Buchanan's  five  words — "  Nos  alio  ears 
animusque  vocat. " 

Ite  leves  nugae,  sterilesque  valete  Camoenae, 

Grataque  Phoebaeo  Castalis  unda  choro. 
Ite,  sat  est :    primos  vobiscum  absumsimus  annos, 

Optima  pars  vitae  deperiitque  meae. 
Quaerite  quern  capiat  jejuna  cantus  in  umbra : 

Quaerite  qui  pota  carmina  cantet  aqua. 


250  Poems  and  Translations 

Dulcibus  illecebris  tenerum  vos  fallitis  aevum, 

Dum  sequitur  blandae  carmen  inerme  lyrae. 
Debita  militiae  molli  languescit  in  umbra, 

Et  fluit  ignavis  fracta  juventa  sonis. 
Ante  diem  curvos  senium  grave  contrahifc  artus, 

Imminet  ante  suum  mors  properata  diem  : 
Ora  notat  pallor,  macies  in  corpora  toto  est, 

Et  tetrico  in  vultu  mortis  imago  sedet. 
Otia  dum  captas,  praeceps  in  mille  labores 

Irruis,  et  curis  angeris  usque  novis. 
Nocte  leves  somnos  resolutus  compede  fossor 

Carpit,  et  in  mediis  nauta  quiescit  aquis : 
Nocte  leves  somnos  carpit  defessus  arator, 

Nocte  quies  ventis,  lonioque  mari : 
Nocte  tibi  nigrae  fuligo  bibenda  lucernae. 

Si  modo  Calliopes  castra  sequenda  putes : 
Et  tanquam  Libyco  serves  curvata  metallo 

Robora,  et  Herculea  poma  ferenda  manu, 
Pervigil  in  lucem  lecta  atque  relecta  revolves, 

Et  putri  excuties  scripta  sepulta  situ. 
Saepe  caput  scalpes,  et  vivos  roseris  ungues, 

Irata  feries  pulpita  saepe  manu. 
Hinc  subitae  mortes,  et  spes  praerepta  senectae, 

Nee  tibi  fert  Clio,  nee  tibi  Phoebus  opem. 
Si  caput  in  cubitum  lassa  cervice  recumbat, 

Et  sopor  exiguus  lumina  fessa  premat : 
Ecce,  vigil  subito  quartam  denuntiat  horam, 

Et  tonitru  horrifico  lumina  clausa  quatit : 
Excutit  attonito  somnos^  sonus  aeris  acuti, 

Admonet  et  molli  membra  levare  toro. 
Vix  siluit,  jam  quinta  sonat ;    jam  janitor  urget 

Cymbala,  tirones  ad  sua  signa  vocans. 
Mox  sequitur  longa  metuendus  veste  magister, 

Ex  humero  laevo  mantica  terga  premit. 
Dextera  crudeli  in  pueros  armata  flagello  est : 

Laeva  tenet  magni  forte  Maronis  opus. 
Jam  sedet,  et  longis  clamoribus  ilia  rumpit, 

Excutit  implicitos  ingenioque  locos. 

'  Griffin's  London  edition  of  1686,  tlie  1677  Edinburgh  edition  of  Cairne 
who  employed  printers  from  Holland,  as  well  as  more  recent  editions,  have 
aomno. 


Elegia  I.  251 

Corrigit,  et  delet,  mufcat,  vigilata  labore 

Promit,  in  obscuro  quae  latuere  diu.' 
Magna,  nee  ingeniis  aevi  explorata  prioris, 

Eruit,  inventas  nee  sibi  celat  opes. 
[Ignava  incerta^  stertit  plerumque  juventus, 

Cogitat  aut  curae  multa  priora  suae.] 
Alter  abest,  petiturque  alter,  mercede  parato 

Qui  vocet,  et  fictos  condiat  arte  doles. 
Ille  caret  caligis,  huic  rupta  calceus  alter 

Pelle  hiat:    ille  dolet,  scribit  et  ille  domum. 
Hinc  virgae,  strepitusque  sonant,  fletuque  rigantur 

Ora,  inter  lacrymas  transigiturque  dies. 
Dein  nos  sacra  vocant,  dein  rursus  lectio,  rursus 

Verbera :    sumendo  vix  datur  hora  cibo. 
Protinus  amota  sequitur  nova  lectio  mensa, 

Excipit  banc  rursus  altera,  coena  brevis : 
Surgitur,  in  seram  noctem  labor  improbus  exit, 

Ceu  brevis  aerumnis  hora  diurna  foret. 
Quid  memorem  interea  fastidia  mille  laborum. 

Quae  non  ingenua  mente  f  erenda  putes  ? 
Ecce  tibi  erronum''  plenas  ex  urbe  phalanges, 

Terraque  f  erratis  calcibus  icta  tremit : 
Turba  ruit,  stolidasque  legentibus  applicat  aures, 

Quales  Phoebaeae  Phryx  dedit  ante  lyrae. 
Et  queritur  nullis  onerari  compita  chartis. 

Esse  et  Alexandrum''  nullo  in  honore  suum  : 
Nee  gravidum  pleno  turgescere  margine  librum, 

Neglectumque  premi  vile  Guidonis  opus. 
Curritur  ad  montem  magno  cum  murmure  acutum, 

Aut  alias  aedes,  sicubi  beta  sapit. 
Quid  referam  quoties  defenditur  acer  Orestes, 

Carmina  vel  numeris  cum  caruere  suis  ? 

1  The  edition  published  at  Edinburgh  in  1615  by  Andrew  Hart  gives  situ 
instead  of  diu. 

2  This  couplet  is  not  inserted  in  any  edition  except  in  Ruddiman's, 
Burmann's,  and  Hart's  Edinburgh  edition  of  1615  where  interea  is  given 
instead  of  incerta. 

3  The  errones  were  elderly  students  who  worked  very  little,  were  very 
unruly,  and  merely  attended  classes  for  many  years  for  no  more  definite 
purpose  than  "killing  time."  They  were  known  in  Paris  as  galoches,  "so- 
called,"  Professor  Hume  Brown  says,  "from  the  galoshes  which  they  wore  in 
winter." 

*  Alexander  of  Villa-dei,  a  grammarian  of  the  Middle  Ages. 


252  Poems  and  Translations 

Arcadico  juveni  quod  laeva  in  parte  mamillae 

Nil  salit,  iratus  clamafc  uterque  parens  : 
Conqueritur  nullo  labentia  tempora  frucfcu, 

Totque  diu  sumtus  deperiisse  suos.' 
[Quin  etiam  in  libros  uati  consumta  fcalenta 

Supputat :    et  damnum  fiagitiumque  vocat.] 
Aestimat  et  nostros  non  aequa  lance  labores : 

Temporis  et  nulla  damna  rependit  ope. 
Adde,  quod  Aonidum  paupertas  semper  adhaerens 

It  comes,  et  castris  militat  ipsa  suis : 
Sive  canas  acies  in  Turcica  bella  paratas, 

Sive  aptes^  tenui  mollia  verba  lyrae : 
Sive  levi  captas  populi  spectacula  socco, 

Turgidus  aut  tragico  syrmate  verris  humum : 
Denique  quicquid  agis,  comes  assidet  improba  egestas, 

Sive  poema  canis,  sive  poema  doces. 
Bella  gerunt  urbes  septem^  de  patria  Homeri : 

Nulla  domus  vivo,  patria  nulla  fuit. 
Aeger,  inops  patrios  deplorat  Tityrus  agros, 

Statius  instantem  vix  fugat  arte  famem. 
Exul  Hyperboreum  Naso  projectus  ad  axem, 

Exilium  Musis  imputat  ille  suum. 
Ipse  Deus  vatum  vaccas  pavisse  Pheraeas 

Creditur,  Aemonios  et  numerasse  greges. 
Calliope  longum  coelebs  cur  vixit  in  aevum  ? 

Nempe  nihil  doti*  quod  numeraret,  erat. 
Interea  celeri  cursu  delabitur  aetas, 

Et  queritur  duram  tarda  senecta  famem  : 
Et  dolet  ignavis  studiis  lusisse  juventam, 

Jactaque  in  infidam  semina  moeret  humum : 
Nullaque  maturis  congesta  viatica  canis, 

Nee  faciles  portus  jam  reperire  ratem. 
Ite  igitur,  Musae  steriles,  aliumque  ministrum 

Quaerite :    nos  alio  sors  animusque  vocat. 

iThis  couplet  is  found  only  in  Hart's  Edinburgh  edition,  Ruddiman'a 
1715,  and  Burmann's  1725. 

^The  first  edition,  1667,  has  aptas, — evidently  an  error. 

'■'  Edinburgh  edition  of  1615  gives  this  line— Septem  bdla  yenad  urbes. 

■*  In  the  Amsterdam  edition  published  by  Henry  Wetsten,  1687,  dotis  is 
given  instead  of  doti. 


Elegia  I.  253 

Translation 

{hy  T.  D.  Bohb,  M.A.,  Paisley). 

Ye  barren  books,  I've  played  the  fool  too  long, 

Tending  your  trivial  vanities  of  song ! 

I'm  growing  old,  and  ask,  What  is  to  me 

Apollo  with  his  nymphs  of  Castalie  ? 

He  lures  to  thankless  toil,  and  now  appears 

My  Will  o'  the  Wisp  above  the  marsh  of  years. 

Can  any  mortal  breakfast  on  a  verse. 

Or  quench   his  drouth   with   water,    and   rehearse 

The  vinous  classic  song  ?     If  any   choose. 

Go  seek  him  out  to  fill  my  empty  shoes. 

Right  pleasantly  does  song  allure  the  young. 
Sweet  song  that  leaves  the  manly  lyre  unstrung. 
Their  country,  calling  them  to  bow  and  blade. 
Finds  them  relaxed  in  some  delightful  shade. 
Marring  their  youth  in  metring  idle  sound ; 
So,  ere  their  life  has  run  the  ample  round. 
They  bow  enfeebled  limbs ;  nay,   while  the  years 
Count  them  yet  young,  Death  tolls  upon  their  ears 
His  quick  approach ;  nor  is  he  far  to  seek, 
Seated  on  shrunken  form  and  withered  cheek. 

The  dream  of  lettered  leisure !   I  and  you 
Yearn  over  it,  then,  plunged  in  work,  pursue 
A   thousand   toils  with  troubles   ever   new. 

Night  comes  for  sleep.     Poor  clowns  that  turn  the  sod 

Leave  spade  or  plough  and  straight  begin  to  nod ; 

Tired  mariners  upon  the  middle  deep 

Find   wave  and   wind  a  lullaby  to  sleep; 

Yea,  oft  with  night  will  roughest  storms  give  o'er, 

And  surges  cease  along  the  Ionian  shore. 

But  you  that  think  to  serve  the   Muse  of   Song, 

Drink  reek  of  sooty  lamp  the  whole  night  long. 

Sleepless  as  e'er  the  dragon  lay  of  old. 

Warden  beneath  those  boughs  that  bent  with   gold  ; 

(How  vainly  sleepless,  too,  since  Hercules 

Must  yet  the  golden  apples  cull  at  ease). 


264  Poems  and  Translations 

Even  such   are   you  that   hear   the   early   chimes, 

Still  pondering  what  you've  read  a  score  of  times, 

Eager  to  sweep  the  obscuring   dust  away 

From  antique  lore.     Oft  till  the  dawning  day 

You  bite  your  nails  to  the  quick,  and  scratch  your  head, 

And  bang  your  desk,   but  never  win  to  bed. 

What  guerdon  for  it  all?     Long  years  and  glory? 
In  no  wise  does  the  Muse  of  song  or  story 
So   royally  reward.     An   early   death 
Is  all  the  comfort  that  she  promiseth. 

For  sleep's  denied.     The  tired  neck  may  bow, 
And  on  the  pillowed  elbow  droop  the  brow, 
A  little  sleep  may  cool  your  burning  sight. 
When  sudden  clamour  fills  the  startled  night. 
Wildly  you  wake,  unnerved  for  what  dread  shock. 
And  hear  the  night-watch  bellowing  "  Four  o'clock! 
With  brazen  din  he  deafens  night  around, 
Warning  day's  bondmen   not  to  sleep  too  sound. 
Scarce  is  he  silent,  scarce  your  eyelids  close. 
When   "Five  o'clock!  "  shatters  your  last  repose. 
Clang  goes  the  bell  I     The  porter — sleepless  ass  !  — 
Is  ringing  scholars  to  your  morning  class. 

Prompt  at  the  call,  and  dreadful  in  the  frown 

He  wears  to  match  his  flowing  Roman  gown. 

Behold  the  master  follow  forth  to  school. 

He   clutches   what   proclaims   a   sceptred    rule. 

And  looks  as  he'd  out-tyrannise  the  Turk ; 

In  the   other   hand   he  holds   the   morning's   work, 

Virgil  perchance, — so  great,  yet  thus  so  mean. 

Now  at  his  desk  he  eyes  the  restless  scene. 

And  cracks  his  cheeks  with  shouting.     Say  he  wins, 

And  quiet — most  comparative — begins  ; 

He  takes  his  task,  unravelling  some  skein 

Of  tangled  Latin,  seeking  to  make  plain 

To  careless  boys  the  questionable  text 

That  had  his  midnight  vigil  so  perplext. 

He  changes  this  and  that,   with  skill  to   note 

Errors  the  classic  author  never  wrote, 

And  vindicates  the  readings  that  may  be. 

From  lore  long  latent  in  hia  memory. 


Elegia  I.  255 

He  scatters  knowledge  with  a  lordly  hand ; 
Things  that  no  former  age  could  understand 
Are  his  attainment ;  and  he  casts  away 
Those  treasures  of  his  cornucopia, — 
But  casts  to  slothful  swine.     A  steady  snore 
Comes  from  the  crowd  that  study  on  the  floor  ; 
And  those  who  seem  awake  in  studious  wise 
Are  knaves  that  listen  only  with  their  eyes. 

Some  one  is  truant ;    another  has  taken  care 
To  hire  some  rascal  with  a  specious  air 
To  have  him  called  away.     Or,  this  cold  morn, 
One  has  no  boots ;    another's  boots  are  worn 
To  sandals.     In  that  corner  over  there, 
Some  booby  blubbers  for  a  mother's  care ; 
Or  there  is  one  that  lets  his  fancy  roam. 
And,  'stead  of  writing  notes,  is  writing  home. 

Wherefore  the  switch  is  busy,   and  the  sound 

Of  frequent  lamentation  floats  around ; 

Tears  channel  youthful   cheeks;   and,   when   'tis   run. 

The  record  of  the  hour  is — Nothing  done. 

Then  comes  the   call  to   prayers;   after   which 

Another   hour   of   Latin   and   the   switch. 

Then   breakfast ;   but  the   board   is   hardly   set 

When  it  is  borne   away.     We   only   whet 

Our  appetites  ere  clangs  the  bell  again, 

Renewing  the  futility  and  pain 

Of  Latin  lessons.     When  that  weird  is  o'er 

Comes  dinner,  and  as  breakfast  proved  before, 

'Tis  but  a  snack  ere  we   are   called   away. 

Whither?     The  tired  to  sleep,  the  fresh  to  play? 

No,  Latin  lends  small  heed  to  set  of  sun, 

And  we  are  deep  in  night  ere  work  is  done, — 

Such   work  as  'tis.     Why  should  I  court  your  scorn 

Telling  the  thousand   degradations   borne 

In  classes  crowded  with  an  adult  crew 

Too  old  to  birch,  yet  seeking  nothing  new. 

Nor  even  come  to  keep  their  learning  green. 

All  day  the  city's  nuisance  they  have  been. 

Now  from  the  streets  dusk-driven,   where  so  well 


256  Poems  and  Translations 

Ensconce  themselves  and  make  a  childish  hell 

As  in  those  rooms  where  once  they  suffered  woe  ? 

So,    foolishly    indulged    to    come    and    go 

At  their  sweet  will,  into  the  class  they  pour 

With  clogs  that  well-nigh  clatter  through  the  floor,— 

A   graceless  rabble !     Making   no   pretence 

To  listen,  for  their  dull  indifference 

Is  God's  own  blame ;  they  fail  in  heavenly  fire, 

As  the  Phrygian  failed  when  Phoebus  charmed  his  lyre 

Yet  they'll  complain :    ' '  Why  are  no  posters  out 

To  tell  us  what  the  lectures  are  about  ?  " 

Or,  "This  new  grammar!     Why  have  you  forsook 

Old    Alexander  ?     Never    a    better    book ! 

Do  you  fancy  that  we  bothered  with  his  notes!" 

Nay,    even   neglected   Guido   has  their  votes ! 

So,  with  a  hue  and  cry  for  Latin  grammar — 

The  sound  old  style  !  — they  rush  with  rowdy  clamour 

To  Montaigu,  or  whereso  they  shall  find 

An  atmosphere  to  suit  the  idle  mind. 


Then  there's  the  angry  parent,  whose  dear  boy, 

A  dull  Arcadian,  disappoints  the  joy 

His  father  thought  to  find.     "  'Tis  all  a  sell !  " 

He'll  coarsely  shout,  and  even  the  coppers  tell 

That  books  have  cost.     But  one  thing  has  no  place 

In  his  brute  cries  of  Swindle  and  Disgrace ! 

He  never  counts  the  time  and  trouble  spent 

By  the  poor  teacher  of  his  innocent. 

Yet   one   thing   more.     The   servant   of   the   Muse 
Has   one   companion   he   shall   never   lose. 
Even  poverty.     That  lean  vivandiere 
Campaigns  with   him   ever ;   he  must  fare 
As  she  provides,  yet  find  a  soul  for  song. 
And  whatsoe'er  the  mood,  or  sweet  or  strong,— 
Whether  smooth  carol  to  the  lightsome  lyre, 

'  Two  linoH  omitted,  Qiiiil  referam  qnotieji,  etc. ,  easy  to  translate  literally, 
but  of  oljscuro  intoiprctation.  No  oclitur  has  yet  t;iven  an  explanation  that  is 
not  open  to  objeotions. 


Elegia  1.  257 

Or   battle-song  a  Turkish   war  to   fire, 

Or  motley  matter  for  the  comic  stage, 

Or  swelling  syllables  of  tragic  rage, — 

It  profits  nothing.     Teach  or  make  such  song, 

The  one  reward  is  poverty   life-long. 

Homer  in  life  had  home  or  country  none. 

Now  seven  cities  claim  him  for  their  son. 

Where  once  his  fathers  held  their  flocks   at  feed 

The  ruined   Virgil   filled   his  forlorn   reed 

With  sick  complaint.     Though  Statins  o'er  and  o'er 

Polished  good  verse,  the  wolf  kept  at  his  door. 

Ovid,   an   exile  in  the   utter   north, 

Must  blame  his  Muse.     'Tis  even  given  forth 

How   once   Apollo,    lord   of   minstrelsy. 

Drove  kine  and  counted  sheep  in  Thessaly. 

Why  must  Calliope  live  a  maid  so  long  ? 

Her  only  dowry  was  the  gift  of  song. 

So  'tis  to-day.     Our  youth  is  quickly  o'er. 
And  all  the  song  is  hardship  at  threescore. 
Gray-haired,   we  mourn  the  barren  years  of  toil. 
Harvesting  nothing  from  a  well-sown  soil; 
Or,  after  buffeting  with  every  gale, 
Finding  no  happy  port  to  strike  the  sail. 

Avaunt  ye,  then,  and  find  some  other  slave. 
Ye  thankless  Muses !  What  I  have  to  save 
Of  years  and  strength  craves  higher  destiny ; 
My  star,  my  soul,   command  that  I  be  free. 

Thanslation 

(hy  Joachim  du  Bellay,  1568). 

Adieu  ma  Lyre,  adieu  les  sons 
De  tes  inutiles  chansons  : 
Adieu  la  source,  qui  recree 
De  Phebus  la  tourbe  sacree. 
J'ay  trop  perdu  mes  jeunes  ans 
En  vos  exercices  plaisans : 
J'ay  trop  a  vos  jeux  asservie 
La  meilleure  part  de  ma  vie. 
Cerchez  mes  vers,  et  vous  aussi 
O  Muses,  jadis  mon  soucy, 

B 


258  Poems  and  Translations 

Qui  a  vos  douceurs  nompareilles 
Se  laisse  flatter  les  oreilles : 
Cerchez,  qui  sous  Toeil  de  la  nuict 
Enchante  par  vostre  doux  bruit, 
Avec  les  Nymphes  honorees 
Danse  au  bal  des  Graces  dorees. 
Vous  trompez,  o  mignardes  soeurs, 
La  jeunesse  par  vos  douceurs : 
Qui  fuit  le  Palais,  pour  elire 
Les  vaines  chansons  de  la  Lyre : 
Vous  corrompez  les  ans  de  ceux, 
Qui  sous  I'ombrage  paresseux 
Laissent  languir  effeminee 
La  force  aux  armes  destinee. 
L'hyver,  qui  naist  sur  leur  printemps, 
Voulte  leur  corps  devant  le  temps : 
Devant  le  temps  I'avare  parque 
Les  pousse  en  la  fatale  barque. 
Leur  teint  est  tousjours  pallissant, 
Leur  corps  est  tousjours  languissant, 
De  la  mort  I'effroyable  image 
Est  tousjours  peinte  en  leur  visage. 
Leur  plaisir  trayne  avecques  luy 
Tousjours  quelque  nouvel  ennuy  : 
Et  au  repos  ou  ils  se  baignent. 
Mile  travaux  les  accompaignent. 
Le  miserable  pionnier 
Ne  dort  d'un  sommeil  prisonnier : 
Le  nocher  au  milieu  de  I'onde 
Sent  le  commun  repos  du  monde : 
Le  dormir  coule  dans  les  yeux 
Du  laboreur  laborieux : 
La  mer  ne  sent  tousjours  Forage : 
Les  vents  appaiscnt  leur  courage : 
Mais  toy  sans  repos  travaillant, 
Apres  Caliope  baillant, 
Quel  bien,  quel  plaisir  as-tu  d'ello, 
Fors  lo  parfum  d'une  chandello  ? 
Tu  me  sombles  garder  encor' 
Les  chesnes  so  courbans  sous  Tor, 
Et  les  pommes  mal  attachees, 


Elegia  I.  259 


Par  les  mains  d'Hercule  arrachees. 

Jamais  le  jour  ne  s'est  leve 
Si  matin,  qu'il  ne  fait  trouve 
Revant  dessus  tes  poesies 
Toutes  poudreuses  et  moisies. 
Souvent,  pour  un  vers  allonger, 
II  te  fault  les  ongles  ronger : 
Souvent  d'une  main  courroucee 
L'innocente  table  est  poussee. 

Ou  soit  de  jour,  ou  soit  de  nuict, 
Ceste  rongne  tousjours  te  cuit. 
Jamais  ceste  humeur  ne  se  change : 
Tousjours  le  style  te  demange. 
Tu  te  distilles  le  cerveau 
Pour  faire  un  poeme  nouveau  : 
Et  puis  ta  Muse  est  deprisee 
Par  I'ignorance  autorisee. 
Pendant  la  mort  qui  ne  dort  pas, 
Haste  le  jour  de  ton  trespas : 
Adonques  en  vain  tu  t'amuses 
A  ton  Phebus  et  a  tes  Muses, 
Le  Serpent,  qui  sa  queue  mord 
Nous  tire  tous  apres  la  mort. 
O  fol,  qui  haste  les  annees, 
Qui  ne  sont  que  trop  empennees  ! 
Adiouste  a  ces  malheurs  icy, 
De  pauvrete  le  dur  soucy, 
Pesant  fardeau,  que  tousjoirrs  porte 
Des  Muses  le  vaine  cohorts : 
Ou  soit,  que  tu  allies  sonnant 
Les  batailles  d'un  vers  tonnant : 
Ou  soit,  que  ton  archet  accorde 
Un  plus  doux  son  dessus  ta  chorde, 
Soit,  qu'au  theatre  ambicieux 
Tu  monstres  au  peuple  ocieux 
Les  malheurs  de  la  Tragedie, 
Ou  les  jeux  de  la  Comedie. 

Sept  villes  de  Grece  ont  debat 
Pour  I'auteur  du  Troyen  combat : 
Mais  le  chetif,  vivant  n'eut  onques 
Ny  maison,  ny  pais  quelconques. 


260  Poems  and  Translations 

Tytire  pauvre  et  malheureux, 
Regrette  ses  champs  plantureux : 
Le  pauvre  Stace  a  peine  evite 
De  la  faim  rimporfcune  Buyte. 
Ovide  du  Gefcique  seiour, 
Falche  de  la  clarte  du  jour, 
De  son  bannissement  accuse 
Ses  yeux,  ses  livres,  et  sa  Muse. 
Mesmes  le  Dieu  musicien 
Sur  le  rivage  Amphrysien 
D'Admete  les  boeufs  mena  paistre, 
Et  conta  le  troppeau  champestre. 
Mais  fault-il  pour  les  vers  blasmer 
Nombrer  tous  les  flots  de  la  mer, 
Et  toute  I'arene  roulante 
Sur  le  pave  d'une  eau  coulante ! 
Malheureux,  qui  par  I'univers 
Jetta  la  semence  des  vers : 
Semence  digne  qu'on  evite 
Plus  que  celle  de  I'aconite. 
Malheureux,  que  Melpomene 
Veit  d'un  bon  oeil,  quand  il  fut  ne, 
Luy  inspirant  des  sa  naissance 
De  son  scavoir  la  cognoissance. 
Si  le  bon  heur  est  plus  amy 
De  celuy  qui  n'a  qu'a  demy 
Des  doctes  soeurs  I'experience, 
O  vaine  et  ingrate  science ! 
Heureux  et  trois  et  quatre  fois 
Le  fort  des  armes  et  des  lois : 
Heureux  les  gros  sourcils  encore, 
Que  le  peuple  ignorant  adore. 
Toy  que  les  Muses  ont  eleu, 
Dequoy  te  fert-il  d'estre  teu, 
Si  pour  tout  le  gaing  de  ta  peine 
Tu  n'as  qu'une  louange  vaine  ? 
Tes  vers  sans  fruict,  laborieux 
Te  sent  voler  victorieux 
Par  I'esperance,  qui  te  lie 
L'esprit  d'uno  douce  folic. 
Tes  ans,  qui  coulent  ce  pendant, 


Elegia  I.  261 


Te  laissent  tousjours  attendant: 
Et  puis  ta  vieille  lamente 
Sa  pauvrete,  qui  la  tormente : 
Pleurant  d'avoir  ainsi  perdu 
Le  temps  aux  livres  despendu : 
Et  d'avoir  seme  sur  I'arene 
De  ses  ans  la  meilleure  grene. 

"  Donne  conge,  toy  qui  es  fin 
Au  cheval,  qui  vieillit,  a  fin 
Que  pis  encor  ne  luy  advienne, 
Et  que  poussif  il  ne  devienne. 
Que  songes-tu  ?    le  lendemain 
Du  corbeau,  n'est  pas  en  ta  main. 
Sua  donq',  la  chose  commencee, 
Est  plus  qu'a  demy  avancee. 

Malheureux,  qui  est  arreste 
De  vieillesse  et  de  pauvrete. 
Vieillesse,  ou  pauvrete  abonde, 
C'est  la  plus  grand'  peste  du  monde.'' 
C'est  le  plaisir,  que  vous  sentez 
O  pauvres  cervaux  evantez : 
C'est  le  profit,  qui  vient  de  celles, 
Que  vous  nommez  les  neuf  pucelles. 
Heureuses  Nymphes,  qui  vivez 
Par  les  forests,  ou  vous  suynez 
La  saincte  vierge  chasseresse, 
Fuyant  des  Muses  la  paresse. 
Soit  donq'  ma  Lyre  un  arc  turquois, 
Mon  archet  devienne  un  carquois : 
Et  les  vers,  que  plus  je  n'adore 
Puissent  traicta  devenir  encore. 
S'il  est  ainsi,  je  vous  suyuray 
O  Nymphes,  tant  que  je  vivray : 
Laissant  dessus  leur  double  croppe 
Des  Muses  I'ocieuse  troppe. 


11. 

Somnium. 

(Fratres  Fraterrimi — XXXIV.) 

This  poem,  which  was  prompted  by  various  arguments  held  with  some 
ecclesiastic  in  Scotland,  and  was  written  during  his  leisure  moments,  was  of 
importance  in  determining  Buchanan's  career.  Such  is  the  satire  that  ren- 
dered him  extremely  obnoxious  to  the  Franciscans  against  whom  it  was 
levelled,  while  it  commended  him  to  the  attention  of  the  king,  who  encouraged 
him  to  renew  his  attacks.  The  Somnium  is  based  on  a  poem  by  WilUam 
Dunbar,  which  is  here  quoted  from  the  MS.  of  George  Bannatyne,  pub- 
lished in  1568.  Buchanan's  poem  was  probably  published  at  Paris  in  1566  by 
"Henri  Estienne."  The  translation  of  Buchanan's  poem  b}'  Robert  M'Farlane, 
M.A.,  was  published  in  the  historical  dissertation  prefixed  to  a  translation  of 
Buchanan's  De  Jure  Reyni  (1799). 

How  Dunbar  was  desyred  to  be  ane  Frier. 

(by   WiJlinm  Dunbar). 

This  nycht  befoir  the  dawning  cleir 
Methocht  Sanct.  Francis  did  to  me  appeir, 
With  ane  religious  abbeit  in  his  hand, 
And  said,  In  this  go  cleith  the  my  servand, 
Refuse  the  warld,  for  thow  mon  be  a  freir. 

With  him  and  with  his  abbeit  bayth  I  skarrit, 
Like  to  ane  man  that  with  a  gaist  wes  marrit : 
Methocht  on  bed  he  layid  it  me  abone ; 
Bot  on  the  flure  delyverly  and  sone 
I  lap  thairfra,  and  nevir  wald  cum  nar  it. 

Quoth  he,  quhy  skarris  thow  with  this  holy  weid? 
Cloith  the  tharin,  for  weir  it  thow  most  neid ; 
Thow  that  hes  lang  done  Venus  lawis  teiche, 
Sail  now  be  freir,  and  in  this  abbeit  preiche : 
Delay  it  nocht,  it  mon  be  done  but  dreid. 


Somnium  263 

Quoth  I,  Sanct  Francis,  loving  be  the  till, 
And  thankit  mot  thow  be  of  thy  gude  will 
To  me,  that  of  thy  clayis  are  so  kynd ; 
Bot  thame  to  weir  it  nevir  come  in  my  mynd : 
Sweet  confessour,  thow  tak  it  nocht  in  ill. 

In  haly  legendis  have  I  hard  allevin, 
Ma  Sanctis  of  bischoppis,  nor  freiris,  be  sic  sevin ; 
Of  full  few  freiris  that  has  bene  Sanctis  I  reid ; 
Quhairfoir  ga  bring  to  me  ane  bischopis  weid, 
Gife  evir  thow  wald  my  saule  gaid  unto  hevin. 

My  brethir  oft  hes  maid  the  supplicatiouns. 
Be  epistillis,  sermonis,  and  relatiounis, 
To  take  the  abyte ;    bot  thow  did  postpone ; 
But  ony  process  cum  on ;   thairfoir  anone 
All  circumstance  put  by  and  excusationis. 

Gif  evir  my  fortoun  wes  to  be  a  freir, 
The  dait  thereof  is  past  full  mony  a  yeir ; 
For  into  every  lusty  toun  and  place. 
Off  all  Yngland,  from  Berwick  to  Calice, 
I  haif  into  thy  habeit  maid  gud  cheir. 

In  freiris  weid  full  fairly  haif  I  fleichit, 
In  it  haif  I  in  pulpet  gone  and  preichit 
In  Derntoun  kirk,  and  eik  in  Canterberry ; 
In  it  I  past  at  Dover  our  the  ferry. 
Throw  Piccardy,  and  thair  the  peple  teichit. 

Als  lang  as  I  did  beir  the  freiris  style, 
In  me,  God  wait,  wes  mony  wrink  and  wyle ; 
In  me  wes  falset  with  every  wicht  to  flatter, 
Quhilk  mycht  be  flemit  with  na  haly  watter ; 
I  wes  ay  reddy  all  men  to  begyle. 

This  freir  that  did  Sanct  Francis  thair  appeir, 
Ane  fieind  he  wes  in  liknes  of  ane  freir ; 
He  vaneist  away  with  stynk  and  fyrrie  smowk; 
With  him  methocht  all  the  house  end  he  towk, 
And  I  awoik  as  wy  that  wes  in  weir. 


264  Poems  and  Translations 

Somnium. 

Mane  sub  auroram  nitidae  vicinia  lucis 

Pallida  venture  cum  facifc  astra  die : 

Arctior  irriguos  somnus  complectitur  artus, 

Demulcens  placido  languida  membra  sinu : 

Cum  mihi  Franciscus  nodoso  cannabe  cinctus, 

Astitit  ante  torum  stigmata  nota  gerens. 

In  manibus  sacra  vestis  erat,  cum  fune  galerus, 

Palla,  fenestratus  calceus,  hasta,  liber : 

Et  mihi  subridens,  Hanc  protinuB  indue,  dixit, 

Et  mea  dehinc  mundi  transfuga  castra  subi. 

Linque  voluptates  cum  sollicitudine  blandas, 

Vanaque  continui  gaudia  plena  metus. 

Me  duce,  spes  fragiles  et  inanes  despice  curas : 

Et  super um  recto  tramite  limen  adi. 

Obstupui  subita  defixus  imagine,  donee 

Vix  dedit  hoe  tandem  lingua  coacta  sonos. 

Pace,  inquam,  vestri  liceat  depromere  verum 

Ordinis,  haud  huraeris  convenit  ista  meis. 

Qui  feret  hanc  vestem,  fiat  servire  paratus : 

At  mihi  libertas  ilia  paterna  placet. 

Qui  feret  hanc,  ponat  perfricta  f ronte  ruborem : 

At  non  ingenuus  nos  finit  ista  pudor. 

Qui  feret  hanc,  fallat,  palpet,  pro  tempore  fingat: 

At  me  simplicitas  nudaque  vita  juvat. 

Nee  me  Phthiriasis,  nee  rancida  cantio  terret, 

Inque  diem  ignavae  vivere  more  ferae : 

Ostia  nee  circum  magno  mugire  boatu. 

Si  tamen  his  nugis  aetheris  aula  patet. 

Pervia  sed  raris  sunt  coeli  regna  cucullis : 

Vix  Monachis  illic  creditur  esse  locus. 

Mentior,  aut  peragra  saxo  fundata  vetusto 

Delubra,  et  titulos  per  simulacra  lege : 

Multus  honoratis  fulgebit  Episcopus  aris, 

Rara  cucullato  sternitur  ara  gregi. 

Atque  inter  Monachos  erit  haec  rarissima  vestis : 

Induat  hanc,  si  quis  gaudeat  esse  miser. 

Quod  si  tanta  meae  tangit  te  cura  salutis. 

Vis  mihi,  vis  anim.ie  consuluisse  meae  ? 

Quilibet  hac  alius  mendicet  veste  superbus : 

At  mihi  da  mitram,  purpureamque  togam. 


Somnium  265 

Translation 

(hy  Bobert  McFarlan,  M.A.,  1799). 

At  dawn,  when  frighted  by  the  solar  ray 
The  stars  turn  pale  at  the  approach  of  day, 
Francis  in  knotty  dowlas  clad,  and  red 
With  recent  lashes,  stood  before  my  bed. 
The  sacred  vestments  all  he  held  in  hand. 
Hat,  cord,  book,  robe,  and  bursten  shoe  and  wand. 
And  smiling  said,  "  At  once  these  badges  wear. 
Forsake  the  world,  and  to  my  camp  repair. 
The  anxious  blandishments  of  pleasure  spurn. 
And  from  her  fearful  joys  repentant  turn. 
Vain  hopes  and  cares  I'll  teach  you  to  despise. 
And  tread  the  paths  strait  leading  to  the  skies." 

Fix'd  in  amaze  I  at  this  vision  hung, 
And  scarce  these  sounds  could  issue  from  my  tongue ; 
' '  Without  offence  may  I  the  truth  declare  ? 
That  garb  my  shoulders  are  unfit  to  bear. 
The  wearer  must  in  cringing  slavery  bend ; 
I  hail  paternal  freedom,  as  my  friend. 
The  wearer's  brazen  front  no  blush  must  know ; 
That  I'm  forbid  by  nature's  honest  glow. 
He  must  deceive,  coax,  feign  and  temporize ; 
I  love  simplicity  without  disguise. 
Me  nor  your  lice  nor  rancid  songs  dismay. 
Nor  prowling  lives  like  those  of  beasts  of  prey ; 
Nor  bellowing  roars,  when  at  each  gate  you  bawl ; 
If  such  vain  arts  can  move  th'  ethereal  hall. 
The  way  to  heaven  the  cowl  can  seldom  find ; 
For  monks,  'tis  thought,  no  place  is  there  assign'd. 
Survey  all  temples  rear'd  with  ancient  stone. 
And  read  o'er  monuments  th'  inscriptions  strown, 
You  many  a  bishop's  honour'd  shrine  will  view. 
Scarce  one  erected  to  the  hooded  crew. 
Let  then  this  garb  with  monks  be  rare  and  fine, 
And  those  who  love  in  penury  to  pine. 
But  if  my  welfare  lie  so  near  your  heart. 
Would  you  save  me,  or  save  my  better  part; 
Let  others  traverse  all  the  country  o'er 
Proud  of  this  dress,  and  beg  from  door  to  door: 
The  trade  I  like  not,  nor  the  monkish  frown, 
Give  me  a  mitre  and  a  purple  gown." 


III. 

Ad  Juventutem  Burdegalensem 

( Miscellaneorum  Liber — IX.) 

This  Sapphic  Ode  exemplifies  Buchanan's  zeal  and  enthusiasm  in  the  education 
of  youth.  Addressed  to  the  youth  of  Bordeaux,  it  warns  them  of  the  dignity 
and  importance  of  a  liberal  education,  and  particularly  of  "that  art  which 
he  had  himself  cultivated  with  such  eminent  success. " 

The  French  translation  is  the  work  which  gained  one  of  the  prizes 
generously  offered  by  Dr.  Steele  (of  Florence)  for  translations  of  certain  of 
Buchanan's  poems. 


Ad  Juventutem  Burdegalensem  267 


Ad  Juventutem  Burdegalensem. 

Vasconis  tellus,  genitrix  virorum 
Portium,  blandi  genitrix  Lyaei, 
Cui  parens  frugum  favet,  et  relictis 

Pallas  Athenis. 
Te  licet  claris  decoret  triumphis 
Martius  belli  labor,  et  vetusti 
Nominis  splendor,  seriesque  longum 

Ducta  per  aevum : 
Ni  tamen  doctas  foveas  Camoenas 
Et  bonas  artes  opera  fideli, 
Spes  tuas  vano  studio  in  futures 

Porrigis  annos. 
Non  enim  moles  Pariae  columnae, 
Phidiae  aut  vivax  ebur,  aut  Myronis 
Aera  mansurae  poterunt  sacrare 

Nomina  famae. 
Obruet  longos  cita  mors  labores, 
Obruet  claros  titulos  opesque ; 
Saxa  findentur  vitiata  serae 

Dente  senectae. 
Mulciber  quamvis  et  iniqua  Juno 
Verterint  urbem  Priami  superbam. 
Ilia  Smyrnaeis  inimica  pensat 

Fata  Camoenis : 
Nee  suo  mallet  cineri  superstes 
Ilium  Eois  dare  jura  terris. 
Qua  patent  nigros^  Rhodope  ab  nivosa 

Usque  sub  Indos. 
Sola  doctorum  monumenta  vatum 
Nesciunt  fati  imperium  aeveri. 
Sola  contemnunt  Phlegethonta,  et  Orci 

Jura  superbi.^ 

'  Taurinus  Edition  gives  fuscoa  instead  of  nigros. 
^  Taurinus  Edition  gives  severa  instead  of  superhi. 


268  Poems  and  Translations 

Translation 

(By  Richmond  S.  Charles,  United  College,  St.  Andrews). 

Navarre,  nurse  of  heroic  sons, 

Land  of  the  generous  vine, 
Thee  Ceres  dowers,  Minerva  shuns 

For  thee  her  Grecian  shrine. 

Of  what  avail  the  stricken  field 
With  brilliant  triumph  crowned. 

The  fame  that  olden  glories  yield 
In  series  long  renowned  ? 

If  from  the  Muse  thou  turn  away. 

Nor  Learning's  gifts  acclaim. 
Vain  is  the  zeal  that  would  essay 

To  win  enduring  fame. 

No  Parian  columns  towering  high. 

Nor  Myro's  bronze  hath  power. 
Nor  Phidias'  long-lived  ivory, 

To  'scape  Oblivion's  hour. 

Man's  laboured  work  Death  levels  low. 

Power  fails,  pomp  disappears, 
The  rocks  asunder  cleft  must  bow 

To  all-devouring  years. 

Though  Vulcan  and  the  Queen  of  Heaven 

Conspired  proud  Ilium's  fall. 
In  Homer's  muse  see  guerdon  given. 

Atonement  made  for  all. 

Now  Troy  resurgent  would  disdain. 

In  lieu,  imperial  sway 
From  farthest  India's  fervid  plain 

To  snows  of   Rhodope. 

The  Poet's  art  alone  can  rise 

Above  Fate's  stern  decree. 
Alone  Oblivion  despise 

And  Hell's  dread  mastery. 


Ad  Juventutem  Burdegalensem  269 

Translation 

(By  R.  de  la  Vaissiere  de  Lavergne,  University  0/  Bordeaux.) 

Gascogne  dont  le  sol  enfante  tour  a  tour 

Et  des  vins  delicats,  et  des  coeurs  sans  faiblesse, 
Tevre  que  des  raoissons  protege  la  d^esse, 

Pallas  d^daigne  Athene  et  t'^lit  pour  s^jour. 

Mais,  si  tu  m^ritas  dans  la  lutte  guerriere, 

Chfere  au  dieu  Mars,  I'honneur  des  trioniphes  fameux ; 
Et  si,  de  sifecle  en  si^cle,  a  tes  fils  valeureux 

Succedent  d'autres  fils  dans  la  noble  carrifere, 

Garde-toi  cependant  de  ne  point  rdjouir 

Par  ua  culte  constant  le  choeur  des  doctes  Muses ; 
Aime  les  arts ;  sinon,  I'espoir  dont  tu  t'abuses 

Tend  en  vain  ton  effort  vers  les  ans  h,  venir. 

C'est  en  vain  que  Paros  6]hve  ses  colonnes ; 

L'ivoire  est  vainement  par  Phidias  sculpte ; 

Vainement  tes  airains,  Myron,  ont  m^rite 
Les  applaudissements  des  Grecs  et  leurs  couronnes. 

De  tous  ces  longs  travaux  rien  ne  demeurera ; 

La  mort  effacera  les  titres  sur  la  pierre ; 

Les  marbres  les  plus  durs  tomberont  en  poussi^re ; 
Le  temps  qui  ronge  tout  les  an^antira. 

Mais,  si  le  dieu  du  feu,  si  Junon  ennemie 

Ont  d^truit  de  Priara  I'orgeuilleuse  cit^  ; 

Le  pofete  de  Smyrne  a  pour  I'dternite 
Su,  malgr^  les  destins,  lui  conf^rer  la  vie. 

Un  aussi  memorable  an^antissement 

Plait  mieux  i  Troie,  enoor,  que  de  vivre  en  sa  gloire, 
Et  d'avoir,  du  neigeux  Bhodope  a  I'Inde  noire, 

L'Orient  tout  entier  sous  sou  commandement. 

Car,  seul,  le  monument  qu'un  po6te  ^difie 
N'a  point  a  redouter  le  sombre  Phldg^ton  ; 
II  m^prise  les  lois  de  I'orgueilleux  Pluton, 

Et  jamais  le  Destin  ne  termine  sa  vie. 


IV. 

Calendae  Maiae. 

( Miscellaneorum  Liber — XI.) 

This  poem  is  one  of  Buchanan's  finest  works.  Wordsworth  refers  to  it  as 
"  equal  in  sentiment,  if  not  in  elegance,  to  anything  in  Horace."  Professor 
Hnnie  Brown  thinks  that  "  Buchanan's  Ode,  by  its  true  poetic  quality,  is 
worthy  of  Horace  when  he  transcends  himself." 

The   two   translations  arc   given,   both   having   being   placed   equal   for 
Dr.  Steele's  prize. 


Calendae  Maiae  271 

Calendae  Maiae. 

Salvete  sacris'  deliciis  sacrae 
Majae  Calendae,  laetitiae,  et  mero, 
Ludisque  dicatae,  jocisque 
Et  teneris  Charitum  choreis. 
Salve  voluptas,^  et  nitidum  decus 
Anni  recurrens  perpetua  vice, 
Et  flos  renascentis  juventae 
In  senium  properantis  aevi. 
Cum  blanda  veris  temperies  novo 
lUuxit  orbi,  primaque  secula 
Fulsere'  flaventi  metallo, 
Sponte  sua  sine  lege  justa : 
Talis  per  omnes  continuus  tenor'' 
Annos  tepenti  rura  Favonio 
Mulcebat,  et  nullis  feraces 
Seminibus  recreabat  agros. 
Talis  beatis  incubat  insulis 
Felicis  aurae  perpetuus  tepor, 
Et  nesciis  campis  senectae 
Difficilis,  querulique  morbi. 
Talis  silentum  per  taciturn  uemus 
Levi  susurrat  murmure  spiritus, 
Lethenque  juxta  obliviosam 
Funereas  agitat  cupressos. 
Forsan  supremis  cum  Deus  ignibus 
Piabit  orbem,  laetaque  secula 
Mundo  reducet,  talis  aura 
Aethereos  animos  fovebit. 
Salve  fugacis  gloria  seculi, 
Salve  secunda  digna  dies  nota. 
Salve  vetustae  vitae  imago, 
Et  specimen  venientis  aevi. 

^  Taurinus  Edition  gives  featis. 

^  Taurinus  Edition  has  venustas.  , 

'  The  same  edition  gives  ^tiarere. 

*  Dfcor  is  given  in  the  Taurinus  Edition. 


272  Poems  and  Translations 

Translation 

(By  Lionel  S.  Charles,  United  College,  St.  Andrews.) 

This  is  the  day  when  joy  divine  is  seen 

And  brimming  cups,  and  Pleasure  crownfed  queen ; 

This  is  the  day  of  jest  and  gambolling, 

And  gentle  Graces  dancing  on  the  green. 

This  is  the  day  of  joyaunce  ;  Spring's  sweet  prime 
Comes  back  to  us  with  soft  recurring  chime, 
And  Youth,  like  some  sweet  flower,  is  born  again 
Between  the  old  and  hurrying  feet  of  time. 

When  the  first  Spring  the  new-born  world  beheld. 
From  Earth's  glad  heart  such  store  of  joyaunce  welled ; 
And  the  first  age  shone  bright  with  yellow  gold. 
Flushing  the  hills  at  pleasure,  uncompelled. 

Such  gentle  breezes  in  the  long  ago, 
For  long,  long  years  through  the  still  wheat  did  go. 
And  softly  stirred  through  all  that  Paradise 
The  fruitful  fields,  when  there  was  none  to  sow. 

Such  is  the  breeze  that  in  the  distant  West, 
Broods  o'er  the  placid  islands  of  the  blest, 
Where  never  came  complaining  voice  of  Eld, 
And  fields,  of  sickness  ever  undistressed. 

And  such  a  breath,  in  groves  that  spirits  know. 
Passes  in  gentleness,  and  whispers  low, 
And  by  the  sleepy  river  of  the  dead 
Stirs  the  dark  cypress  softly  to  and  fro. 

I  think  when  He  shall  purge  the  earth  with  tire. 
And  bring  again  the  famished  world's  desire, 
Perchance  e'en  such  a  blessing  and  a  breeze 
Shall  fan  the  angels  in  their  starry  choir. 

Pride  of  the  age  that  pusses  still  away  ! 
Day  of  fair  mark  !  and  we  who  groot  thee  say  : — 
"  Such  shall  tlie  life  of  our  to-morrow  be. 
Such  was  the  life  of  that  tar  yesterday." 


Calendae  Maiae  273 

TKANStATION 

(By  Victor  F.  Murray,  United  College,  St.  Andrews.) 

Hail  to  thee,  May-day  !  Thou  to  sacred  glee 
Sacredly  kept,  ever  the  devotee 

Of  wine,  jest,  pastime,  merriment  and  the  dance 
Where  tender  Graces  bear  us  company. 

Hail  to  thee,  Joyance  !  and  the  glorious  year, 
Made  by  the  eternal  change  to  re-appear 

In  vernal  loveliness  :  for  fleet  decay, 
Lo  !  youth's  emblossomed  flower,  sweet  and  clear. 

When  springtime's  pleasant  warmth  first  dawned  upon 
The  new-born  world  and  ages  primal  shone 

By  no  true  law  save  of  their  own  sweet  will 
Yellow  with  gold ;  through  all  those  years  agone 

In  such  a  stream  as  this,  continuous 

In  flow,  the  wind,  Favonian,  languorous, 

Soothed  all  the  land  and  quickened  every  field 
To  rich  luxuriance  unsown  of  us. 

Glad  breezes  !  lasting  temperateuess  !  yea,  theirs 
This  lot  perpetual — ours  to-day  ;  for  airs 

Brood  o'er  our  isles,  while  neither  fretful  age 
Nor  querulous  disease  our  calm  impairs. 

A  light  breath  such  as  this  amid  the  grove 
Enwrapt  in  silence  where  the  Silent  move, 

Faint  o'er  oblivious  Lethe  whispering 
Ruffles  the  cypresses  of  death  above. 

Perchance  this  breath,  when  God  will  purify 
The  world  in  final  fire,  and  joyfully 

Lead  happier  ages  to  the  universe, 
Will  clasp  celestial  souls  caressingly. 

Welcome  !  sweet  glory  of  bygone  centuries. 
Welcome  !  sweet  day  deserving  of  all  praise, 

The  mirrored  beauty  of  an  ancient  life. 
Welcome  !  and  earnest  of  the  nearing  days. 


V. 
Desiderium  Lutetiae. 

(Silvae—III.) 

This  beautiful  poem  was  apparently  composed  before  his  departure  from 
Portugal.  He  pathetically  bewails  his  abseuce  from  "  Amaryllis," — which  is 
to  him  an  allegorical  name  for  Paris, — and  hopes  that  his  return  may  not 
be  long  delayed. 

,  The  translation  here  given  was  written  last  summer  for  the  Glasgow 
High  School  Magazine. 

O  Formosa  Amarylli,  tuo  jam  septima  bruma 
Me  procul  aspectu,  jam  septima  detinet  aestas : 
Sed  neque  septima  bruma  nivalibus  horrida  nimbis, 
Septima  nee  rapidis  candens  fervoribus  aestas 
Exstinxit  vigiles  nostro  sub  pectore  curas. 
Tu  mihi  mane  novo  carmen,  dum  roscida  tondet 
Arva  pecus,  medio  tu  carmen  solis  in  aestu, 
Et  cum  jam  longas  praeceps  nox  porrigit  umbras : 
Neo  mihi  quae  tenebris  condit  nox  omnia  vultus 
Est  potis  occultare  tuos,  te  nocte  sub  atra 
Alloquor,  amplector,  falsaque  in  imagine  somni 
Gaudia  soUicitam  palpant  evanida  mentem. 
At  cum  somnus  abit,  curis  cum  luce  renatis 
Tecta  miser  fugio,  tanquam  mihi  tecta  doloris 
Semina  subjiciant,  et  solis  moestus  in  agris, 
Qua  vagus  error  agit  feror,  et  deserta  querelis 
Antra  meis,  silvasque  et  conscia  saxa  fatigo 
Sola  meos  planctus  Echo  miserata  gementi 
Adgemit,  et  quoties  suspiria  pectore  duco, 
Haec  quoque  vicino  toties  suspirat  ab  antro. 
Saepe  super  celsae  praerupta  cacumina  rupis 
In  mare  proapicieiis,  spumaiitia  coerula  demens 
Alloquor,  et  surdis  jacto  irrita  vota  procellis : 


Desiderium  Lutetiae.  275 

O  mare !  quaeque  maris  vitreas,  Nereides,  undas 
Finditis,  in  vestros'  placidae  me  admittite  portus : 
Aut  hoc  si  nimium  est,  nee  naufragus  ire  recuso, 
Dummodo  dilectas  leneam  vel  naufragus  oras. 
0  quoties  dixi  Zephyris  properantibus  illuc, 
Felices  pulchram  visuri  Amaryllida  venti. 
Sic  neque  Pyrene  duris  in  cotibus  alas 
Atterat,  et  vestros  non  rumpant  nubila  cursus, 
Dicite  vesanos  Amaryllidi    Daphnidos  ignes. 
O  quoties  Euro  levibus  cum  raderet  alls, 
Aequora,  dicebam,  Felix  Amaryllida  visa, 
Die  mihi,  Num  meminit  nostri  ?    num  mutua  sentit 
Vulnera  ?  num  veteris  vivunt  vestigia  flammae  ? 
Ille  ferox  contra  rauco  cum  murmure  stridens 
Avolat  irato  similis,  mihi  frigore  pectus 
Congelat,  exanimes  torpor  gravis  alligat  artus. 
Nee  me  pastorum  recreant  solamina,  nee  me 
Fistula,  Nympharumque  leves  per  prata  choreae. 
Nee  quae  capripedes  modulantur  carmina  Panes : 
Una  meos  sic  est  praedata  Amaryllis  amores. 

Et  me  tympana  docta  ciere  canora  Lycisca, 
Et  me  blanda  Melaenis  amavit,  Iberides  ambae, 
Ambae  florentes  annis,  opibusque  superbae  : 
Et  mihi  dotales  centum  cum  matribus  agnos 
Ipsi  promisere  patres,  mihi  munera  matres 
Spondebant  clam  multa :    meum  nee  munera  pectus. 
Nee  nivei  movere  suis  cum  matribus  agni. 
Nee  quas  blanditias  tenerae  dixere  puellae. 
Nee  quas  delicias  tenerae  fecere  puellae. 
Quantum  ver  hyemen,  vietum  puer  integer  aevi, 
Ter  viduam  thalamis  virgo  matura  parentem, 
Quam  superat  Durium  Rhodanus,  quam  Sequana  Mundam, 
Lenis  Arar  Sycorim,  Ligeris  formosus  Iberum, 
Francigenas  inter  Ligeris  pulcherrimus  amnes : 
Tantum  omnes    vincit  Nymphas  Amaryllis  Iberas. 
Saepe  sues  vultus  speculata  Melaenis  in  unda 
Composuit,  pinxitque  oculos,  finxitque  capillum, 
Et  voluit,  simul  et  meruit  formosa  videri. 
Saepe  mihi  dixit,  Animi  male  perdite  Daphni, 

^  After  these  words  in  Hart's  Edinburgh  edition  there  is  added  the  line 
-"  Et  date  Odta/rum  incolumi  contingere  partus." 


276  Poems  and  Translations 

Cur  tibi  longinquos  libet  insanire  furores  ? 

Et  quod  ames  dare  |j(ostra  potest  tibi  terra,  racemos 

Collige  purpureos,  et  spes  ne  concipe  lentas. 

Saepe  choros  festos  me  praetereunte,  Lycisca 

Cernere  dissimulans,  vultusque  aversa  canebat 

Haec,  pedibus  terrain,  et  manibus  cava  tympana  pulsansj 

Et  Nemesis  gravis  ira,  atque  irritabile  numen, 

Et  Nemesis  laesos  etiam  punitur  amores. 

Vidi  ego  dum  leporem  venator  captat,  echinum 

Spernere,  post  vanos  redeuntem  deinde  labores, 

Vespere  nee  retulisse  domum  leporem  nee  echinum. 

Vidi  ego  qui  mullum  peteret  piscator,  et  arctis 

Retibus  implicitam  tincam  sprevisset  opimam, 

Vespere  nee  retulisse  domum  mullum  neque  tincam. 

Vidi  ego  qui  calamos  crescentes  ordine  risit 

Pastor  arundineos,  dum  torno  rasile  buxum 

Frustra  amat,  (interea  calamos  quos  riserat,  alter 

Pastor  habet),  fragiles  contentum  inflare  cicutas 

Sic  solet  immodicos  Nemesis  contundere  fastus 

Haec  et  plura  Melaenis,  et  haec  et  plura  Lycisca 
Cantabant  surdas  frustra  mihi  semper  ad  aures. 
Sed  canis  ante  lupas,  et  tauras  diliget  ursas, 
Et  vulpem  lepores,  et  amabit  dama  leaenas, 
Quam  vel  tympana  docta  ciere  canora  Lycisca 
Mutabit  nostros  vel  blanda  Melaenis  amores. 
Et  prius  aequoribus  pisces,  et  montibus  umbrae, 
Et  volucres  deerunt  silvis,  et  murmura  ventis, 
Quam  mihi  discedent  f  ormosae  Amaryllidos  ignes : 
Ilia  mihi'  rudibus  succendit  pectora  flammis, 
Finiet  ilia  meos  moriens  morientis  amores. 
Translation 

(By  A.  L.  Taylor,  M.A.,  Glasgow  High  School.) 

O  beauteous  Amaryllis,  now  from  thee 

Seven  weary  years  have  kept  my  feet  afar  ; 
Yet  not  those  winters,  howsoe'er  it  be 

They  to  the  snow-storras  dread  the  gates  unbar, 
Nor  all  those  suraiuers,  when  the  sun's  bright  car 

Burns  with  devouring  heat,  have  power  to  slay 

'  In  all   editions,   except    Hart'a   Edinburgh  edition,  Ruddiman's,  and 
Burmann'e,  meum  is  wrongly  given  instead  of  viihi. 


Desiderium  Lutetiae  277 

The  watchful  cares  that  in  iny  bosom  are  : 

My  heart's  deep  longing  time  can  not^llay, 
And  that  so  distant  date  seems  but  as  yesterday. 

Thou  art  my  song  at  dawning,  when  the  dew 

Lies  on  the  fields  where  nibbling  flocks  do  stray  : 
At  noon  my  song  and  I  the  strain  renew 

When  the  long  shadows  mark  the  dying  day  : 
And  night,  that  hideth  all  in  dark  array, 

Hides  not  from  nie  thine  eyes  that  beauteous  beam  : 
In  the  black  night  I  name  thy  name  alway, 

And  fold  thee  to  my  breast,  and  this  doth  seem 
To  solace  my  sad  heart  although  'tis  but  a  dream. 

But  ah,  when  sleep  departs,  with  morning  light 

Those  cares  reborn,  my  home  I  sadly  flee, 
As  though  its  dreadful  walls  of  this  my  plight 

So  piteous  the  sombre  source  might  be. 
In  the  lone  fields  I  wander  dolefully 

Wherever  chance  may  turn  my  careless  feet. 
And,  as  I  make  my  plaint,  forlorn  for  thee. 

The  desert  caves,  each  woodland  wild  retreat 
And  all  the  listening  rocks  the  echo  sad  repeat. 

Echo  alone  that  hears  how  I  complain 

Mourns  with  me  when  I  mourn,  and  when  I  sigh, 
From  forth  the  neighbouring  caves  he  sends  again 

Each  sad  lament  and  each  despairing  cry. 
And  ofttimes  from  a  rock's  steep  summit  high 

I  cast  mine  eyes  forlorn  upon  the  sea. 
And  the  wild  foaming  waves  all  frenziedly 

I  call  aloud  and  the  wild  winds  that  flee 
Heedless  of  all  my  prayers  that  unavailing  be. 

"  O  sea,  and  you,  ye  Nereids  that  do  cleave 

The  sea's  bright  waves,  ah,  be  ye  gentle  now, 
And  me  within  your  havens  safe  receive. 

Or  if  ye  may  not  with  such  grace  endow, 
Even  shipwrecked  shall  I  go,  if  ye  allow 

That  shipwrecked  I  may  win  the  shores  so  dear." 
How  often  I  have  made  my  solemn  vow 

To  the  soft  western  winds  that  I  did  hear 
Hastening  towards  the  land  where  I  was  fain  to  steer  : 


278  Poems  and  Translations 

"  Ye  happy  winds  that  all  so  soon  shall  see 

My  Amaryllis,  may  Pyrene  ne'er 
With  its  harsh  rocks  a  horrid  barrier  be 

To  vex  your  gentle  wings  against  them  there, 
As  ye  to  Amaryllis  shall  declare 

The  burning  flames  that  fire  her  Daphnis'  breast." 
Ah  me,  how  many  times  with  anxious  care 

The  wings  of  Eurus  I  would  fain  arrest. 
As  o'er  the  waves  he  flew,  with  sorrowful  request. 

"  Wind  that  my  Amaryllis  late  hast  seen, 

O  happy  wind,  hath  she  remembrance  still? 
Tell  me,  0  wind,  if  yet  her  heart  hath  been 

Filled  with  the  love  that  doth  my  bosom  fill. 
Or  have  the  embers  of  that  love  grown  chill  ? " 

But  he  flies  from  me  like  a  man  in  ire 
With  raucous  murmurs  loud  and  fierce  and  shrill. 

Freezing  with  cold  my  heart  that  was  afire ; 
My  lifeless  limbs  are  bound  as  if  in  torpor  dire. 

And  now  the  things  that  shepherds  do  delight 

Not  solace  me,  the  tabor  hath  no  joy  : 
Along  the  grassy  mead  the  dances  light 

Of  the  sweet  nymphs  do  but  my  heart  annoy ; 
For  me  the  goat-foot  forest  gods  deploy 

The  wonders  of  their  sylvan  notes  in  vain ; 
And  every  rapture  now  hath  some  alloy  ; 

For  Amaryllis  all  my  love  hath  ta'en 
And  I  all  other  loves  reject  in  sad  disdain. 

Sweet-voiced  I^ycisca  of  such  skill  to  sound 

The  harmonious  timbrels,  sweet  Melaeuis  fair, 
Iberians  both,  have  loved  me,  both  renowned 

For  youth  and  wealth,  but  not  for  these  I  care; 
Albeit  their  sires  that  wealth  with  me  would  share  : 

A  hundred  lambs  they  promised  as  their  dower, 
With  their  own  ewes,  and  secret  gifts  and  rare 

Their  motheis  proferred  :  vain  was  all  their  power 
To  draw  my  heart  away  from  its  true  love  an  hour. 

Nor  snowy  lambs  with  their  own  ewes  could  move 
This  heart  of  mine,  nor  could  the  maidens  sweet 


Desiderium  Lutetiae  279 

With  all  their  flatteries  fair  allure  my  love, 

Nor  all  their  charms  with  that  one  charm  compete. 

As  spring  surpasses  winter,  as  the  heat 
Of  youth  outvies  age,  weak  and  withered, 

As  the  fair  maiden  now  for  marriage  meet 
Her  mother  far  outvies — thrice  widowed, 

Beauty  and  grace  now  gone  and  all  her  fairness  fled ; 

As  Rhine  the  Douro,  as  the  lordly  Seine 

Outvies  Mondego,  as  the  beauteous  stream 
Of  the  smooth  Arar  doth  the  stream  disdain 

Of  Segne,  as  the  lovely  Loire  doth  seem 
Fairer  than  Ebro — Loire  men  fairest  deem 

Of  all  the  waves  fair  Trance  sends  to  the  sea, — 
Even  so  my  Amaryllis  I  esteem 

Fairer  than  all  the  maids  that  beauteously 
Move  o'er  Iberia's  meads,  howe'er  they  beauteous  be. 

Ofttimes  Melaenis  gazing  in  the  sea 

Adorns  her  face,  adorns  her  lovely  hair ; 
Makes  bright  her  eyes  in  eagerness  to  be 

Fair  to  behold  and  to  behold  is  fair ; 
Ofttimes  my  heart  she  subtly  seeks  to  share : 

"  O  frenzied  Daphnis,  wherefore  passion  so  ! 
For  distant  loves  thy  furious  longings  spare. 

The  things  thou  lovest  here  thy  heart  may  know, 
Pluck  the  bright  grapes  and  let  the  vain  illusions  go." 

Oft  as  I  passed  the  festal  company 

Lycisca  who  had  seen  would  turn  away 
Her  countenance  as  one  that  doth  not  see ; 

And  then  as  though  with  menace  to  dismay, 
She,  as  she  beat  the  earth  in  dances  gay 

And  as  she  beat  the  hollow  timbrels  loud. 
Sang  as  in  warning  :   "  Terrible  alway 

The  wrath  of  Nemesis,  and  lovers  proud. 
That  scorned  sweet  love,  hath  still  with  punishment  endowed." 

And  I  have  seen  the  huntsman,  who  in  scorn 

Had  passed  the  hedgehog  while  the  hare  he  sought. 

At  eventide  with  doleful  steps  retur-n. 

His  bag  with  neither  hare  nor  hedgehog  fraught ; 


280  Poems  and  Translations 

And  I  have  seen  the  fisherman,  that  caught 

A  goodly  tench  in  his  close-woven  net, 
Eager  for  mullet  wisdom  sadly  taught 

When  at  the  eventide,  his  basket  yet 
Of  tench  and  mullet  void,  — he  told  his  vain  regret. 

And  I  have  seen  the  herd  that  did  deride 

The  growing  reeds  what  time  he  sought  in  vain 
The  polished  boxwood  that  afar  doth  hide 

(Meantime  the  reeds  that  he  did  so  disdain 
Another  shepherd  wins)  content  to  gain 

The  fragile  hemlock  :  so  doth  Nemesis 
Beat  down  the  proud  :  these  things  and  more  the  twain, 

Lycisca  and  Melaenis,  well  I  wis 
Would  sing  to  me,  but  still  their  songs  the  mark  would  miss. 

Dogs  with  she-wolves,  with  she-bears  bulls  will  mate, 

The  hare  with  fox,  with  lion  fierce  the  hind. 
Or  e'er  sweet-voiced  Lycisca  compensate 

My  heart's  desire  or  sweet  Melaenis  kind  : 
Birds  shall  desert  the  wood,  and  sighs  the  wind, 

Fishes  the  sea,  and  shades  the  shadowy  hill. 
Ere  Amaryllis  be  by  nie  resigned  ; 

With  love  so  strong  she  doth  my  bosom  fill ; 
And  when  death  stills  her  heart,  my  heart  shall  be  as  still. 


VI. 

Adventus  in  Galliam. 

( Fratres  Fraterrimi— XXVIII.) 

As  a  fitting  aequel  to  the  previous  poem,  Desiderium  Lutetiae,  the  poet  here 
gives  expression  to  his  sentiments  on  revisiting  France. 

The  French  translation  is  the  work  that  won  the  Steele  Prize  offered  to 
students  of  Bordeaux. 

Jejuna  miserae  tesqua  Lusitaniae, 
Glebaeque  tantum  fertiles  penuriae, 
Valete  longum.     At  tu  beata  Gallia 
Salve,  bonarum  blanda  nutrix  artium, 
Coelo  salubri,  fertili  frugum  solo, 
Umbrosa  colles  pampini  molli  coma, 
Pecorosa  saltus,  rigua  valles  fontibus, 
Prati  virentis  picta  campos  floribus, 
Velifera  longis  amnium  decursibus, 
Piscosa  stagnis,  rivulis,  lacubus,  mari ; 
Et  hinc  et  illinc  portuoso  littore 
Orbem  receptans  hospitem,  atque  orbi  tuas 
Opes  vicissim  non  avara  impertiens ; 
Amoena  villis,  tuta  muris,  turribus 
Superba,  tectis  lauta,  cultu  splendida, 
Victu  modesfca,  moribus  non  aspera, 
Sermone  comis,  patria  gentium  omnium 
Communis,  animi  fida,  pace  florida, 
Jucunda,  facilis,  Marte  terrifico  minax, 
Invicta,  rebus  non  secundis  insolens. 
Nee  sorte  dubia  fracta,  cultrix  numinis 
Sincera,  ritum  in  exterum  non  degener: 
Nescit  calores  lenis  aestas  torridos, 
Frangit  rigores  bruma  flammis  asperos, 


282  Poems  and  Translations 

Non  pestilentis  pallet  Austri  spiritu 
Autumnus  aequis  temperatus  flatibus, 
Non  ver  solutis  amnium  repagulis 
Inundat  agros,  et  labores  eluit. 
Ni  patrio  te  amore  diligam,  et  colam 
Dum  vivo,  rursus  non  recuse  visere 
Jejuna  miserae  tesqua  Lusitaniae, 
Glebasque  tantum  fertiles  penuriae. 

Translation 

(By  Andrie  Waltz,  University  of  BordeoMx.) 

O  maigre  Portugal,  ingrate  et  triste  terra, 
Dent  las  champs  n'ont  produit  jamais  que  la  mis^re. 
Adieu  pour  plus  d'un  jour  ! — Et  toi,  terre  des  Francs, 
Salut,  toi  qui  souris  aux  Beaux  Arts,  tes  enfants ! 
Ton  ciel  est  doux,  ton  sol  f^cond ;  la  pampre  ombrage 
Tes  fortunes  coteaux  de  son  moelleux  feuillage. 
Ici  les  gras  troupeaux  paissent  au  ilanc  das  monts ; 
Las  sources  d'onde  pure  arrosent  tes  vallons ; 
La  fleur  brille  en  tes  pr^s  comme  au  ciel  las  ^toiles ; 
Tes  grands  fleuves  partout  bercent  les  blanches  voiles ; 
Mille  et  mille  poissons  pullulant  dans  tes  eaux, 
Peuplant  tes  mers,  tes  lacs,  tes  ^tangs,  tes  ruisseaux ; 
Les  ports  hospitallers  da  tes  divers  rivages 
Accueillent  I'univers  ;  aux  plus  lointains  parages 
D'innombrables  vaisseaux  prodiguent  tas  ti^sors ; 
Tes  riantas  villas,  tes  fiferes  tours,  tes  forts, 
Tas  splendidas  palais,  le  luxe  de  tes  villes. 
Ton  accueil  bienvaillant,  tes  coutumes  faciles, 
Ton  aimabla  parler,  ta  paix,  ta  bonne  foi, 
Charment  las  Strangers  :  tous  les  peuples  en  toi 
Ont  une  autre  patrie.     Aux  ennamis  terrible, 
Tu  jouis  sans  orgueil  de  tn  force  invincible  ; 
Aux  jours  douteux  tu  vois  le  peril  sans  terraur ; 
Ta  pi^t^  reste  sourde  k  I'^trangfere  erreur. 
L'Et^,  qu'un  frais  Zephyr  ici  toujours  r<^fr6ne, 
Ne  connait  pas  les  feux  de  la  terre  Africaine, 
L'Hiver,  quo  de  ton  ciel  atti<5dit  la  chaleur, 
Du  Nord  u'apporte  pas  ici  Tflpre  rigueur  ; 


Adventus  in  Galliam  283 

L'Automne,  tempdrd  par  des  vents  aalutaires, 
De  I'Auster  ne  craint  pas  les  souffles  deldtferes ; 
Et  jamais,  au  Printemps,  les  torrents  ddbord^s 
Et  sans  frein  se  ruant  sur  les  champs  inond^s 
N'engloutissent  soudain  la  moisson  qu'on  espfere. 
Si,  tant  que  je  vivrai,  men  cceur  ne  te  r^vfere 
Et  ne  te  garde  pas  un  filial  amour, 
O  France,  je  consens  k  revoir  quelque  jour 
Du  maigre  Portugal  I'ingrate  et  triste  terre, 
Dont  les  champs  n'ont  produit  jamais  que  la  misfere. 

Translation 

(by  T.  D.  Robb,  M.A.,  Paisley). 

Farewell,   thou   wretched   land,    whose   soil 
Bemocks  the  famished  peasant's  toil. 
Heaven  hold  what  else  for  me  in  store. 
But  Lusitania  never  more ! 

Hail,  happy  France !     Thy  gentle  care 

Tends  every  art  that  makes  life  fair. 

Thy  heaven  breathes  health ;    thy  peasants  sow 

Furrows  where  fattened   harvests  grow, 

Or  rear  on  basking  hills  the  shade 

Of  vines.     Thine,   too,   the  well-browsed   glade, 

Vales   flowing   with    well-waters,    plains 

That  every  meadow-blossom  stains, 

And   rivers   that   with   easy   sweep 

Bear   barges   to   the   greater   deep. 

Where  mariners  with  every  gale 

In  many  a  harbour  strike  the  sail, 

To  find,  with  all  the  wealth  they  bring. 

From  thee  no  niggard  bartering. 

Hail !  where  the  lords  of  land  reside 
In  charm  of  grange  or  towered  pride ; 
And  hail !    where  many  a  dainty  roof 
Gleams  safe  mid  rampart  towns,  war-proof. 
Pleasant   thy  speech,    thy   graces   shine 
In  tasteful  manners  that  refine 
The   coarser    world,    whose   travellers    own 
A  common  love  to  thee  alone. 


284  Poems  and  Translations 

Sound  heart  at  all  times !     Whether  Peace 

Freshen  thy  fields  in  sweet  surcease 

Of  foray,  or  terrific  War 

Come  trampling   o'er   them   from   afar; 

So  light,  so  gay  thy  peaceful  mood, 

So  dauntless  in  the  day  of  blood. 

Nor   vain   in   happiness   and   power, 

Nor  cast  down  in  thy  evil  hour, 

God  is  thy  God,  and  still  to  thee 

As   in   thy   pristine   piety, 

A  noble  worship  undefiled. 

Blest  land !    thy  summer  ever  mild. 

Thy  mellow  winter,   put  to  shame 

Untempered   climes  of  frost  and   flame. 

No   plagues   from   the   wan-stricken    South 

Breathe  from  thy  Autumn's  wholesome  mouth, 

Spring  sets  no  ice-bound  rivers  free 

To  drown  the  seedling  husbandry 

That  quickens  o'er  thy  laboured  earth. 

My  fatherland  !  — even  though  my  birth 

Chanced  elsewhere — when  my   feet  shall  roam 

Thankless,  to  find  a  dearer  home, 

God  send   me  to  that  wretched   soil 

That  mocks  the  famished  peasant's  toil. 

And  curse  me,  as  he  cursed  before, 

On  Lusitania's  barren  shore. 


VII. 

Ad  Invictissimum  Franciae  Regem  Hcnricum  II. 
Post  Victos  Caletes. 

(Liber  Miscellaneorum — I.) 

This  very  fine  poem  was  first  published  in  1558  by  Robert  Stephanus  or 
Stephen,  but  under  another  title — De  Caleto  nuper  ab  Henrico  II.  Franmrum 
Sege  invicliss.  recepta.  In  that  edition,  however,  the  last  four  lines  of  the 
poem  are  not  given.  It  refers  to  the  capture  of  Calais  by  the  Duke  of  Guise 
in  1558,  which  occasion  also  moved  De  l'H6pital,  Turnebus,  and  others  to 
verse.  All  these  are  printed  in  the  Basel  edition  of  Buchanan's  Franciscanns 
et  Fratres,  and  some  of  them  in  Paradin's  De  Motibus  Galliae  et  expugnato 
receptoque  Itio  Gulelorum  anno  ISoS,  printed  in  Serum  Germanicorum  scriptores 
by  Schrader,  III.  pp.  9-30  (1673).  The  English  Translation  here  given  is  by 
Rev.  Francis  Mahony,  S.J.  ("Father  Prout"). 

It  again  shows  how  remarkable  was  Buchanan's  attachment  to  the 
French  people  and  how  much  he  was  interested  in  their  welfare.  His  refer- 
ence to  pater  Somanus  is,  moreover,  a  sign  that  the  Lutheran  reformers  have 
not  yet  secured  his  sympathy. 


286  Poems  and  Translations 

Ad  Invictissimum  Franciae  Regem  Henricum  II. 
Post  Victos  Caletes. 

Non  Parca  fati  conscia,  lubricae 
Non  sortis  axis  sistere  nescius, 
Non  siderum  lapsus,  sed  unus 
Rerum  opifes  moderatur  orbem  : 

Qui  terrain  inertem  stare  loco  jubet, 
Aequor  perennes  volvere  vortices, 
Coelumque  nunc  lucem  tenebris 
Nunc  tenebras  variare  luce : 

Qui  temperatae  sceptra  modestiae 
Dat,  et  protervae  frena  superbiae : 
Qui  lacrymis  foedat  triumphos, 
Et  lacrymas  hilarat  triumphis. 

Exempla  longe  ne  repetam  :   en  jacet 
Fractusque  et  exspes,  quern  gremio  suo 
Fortuna  fotum,  nuper  omnes 
Per  populos  tumidum  ferebat. 

Nee  tu,  secundo  fiamine  quem  super 
Felicitatis  vexerat  aequora, 
Henrice,  virtus,  nesciisti 

Imbriferae  fremitum  procellae. 

Sed  pertinax  hunc  fastus  adhuc  premit, 
Urgetque  pressum  :    et  progeniem  sui, 
Fiducia  pari  tumentem 

Clade  pari  exagitat  Philippum. 

Te,  qui  minorem  te  superis  geris, 
Culpamque  fletu  diluis  agnitam, 
Mitis  parens  placatus  audit, 
Et  solitum  cumulat  favorcm : 

Redintegratae  nee  tibi  gratiae 
Obscura  promit  signa.     Sub  algido 
Nox  Capricorno  longa  terras 
Perpetuis  tenebris  premebat; 


Post  Victos  Caletes  287 

Rigebat  auris  bruma  nivalibus, 
Amnes  acuto  constiteranfc  gelu, 
Deformis  horror  incubabat 
Jugeribus  viduis  colono : 

At  signa  castris  Francus  ut  extulit 
Ductorque  Franci  Guisius  agminis, 
Arrisit  algenti  sub   Arcto 
Temperies  melioris  aurae. 

Hiems  retuso  languida  spicule 
Vim  mitigavit  frigoris  asperi : 
Siccis  per  hibernum  serenum 
Nube  cava  stetit  imber  arvis. 

Stravit  quietis  aequora  fluctibus 
Neptunus,   antris  condidit    Aeolus 
Ventos,  nisi  Francas  secundo 
Flamine  qui  veherent  carinas. 

Per  arva  nuper  squalida,  et  ignibus 
Adhuc  Britannis  pene  calentia/ 
Cornu  benigno  commeatus 
Copia  luxurians  profudit. 

Idem  ut  reductas  abdidit  oppidis 
Francus  cohortes,  mitis  hiems  modo 
Se  rursus  armavit  procellis, 
Et  positas  renovavit  iras. 

Stant  lenta  pigro  flumina  marmore, 
Canisque  campi  sub  nivibus  latent, 
Diverberatum  saevit  aequor 
Horriferis  Aquilonis  alis. 

Ergo  nee  altis  tuta  paludibus 
Tulere  vires  moenia  Gallicas, 
Nee  arcibus  tutae  paludes 
Praecipitem  tenuere  cursum. 

1  Stephen's  Edition  of   1558  gives   this  line  as  "Adhuc  Britanni  pent 
ealeniihuB." 


^^8  Poems  and  Translations 

Loraene  priuceps,  praecipuo  Dei 
Favore  felix,  praecipuas  Deus 
Cui  tradidit  partes,  superbos 
Ut  premeres  domitrice  dextra. 

UniuB  anni  curriculo,  sequens 
Vix  credet  aetas  promeritae  tibi 
Tot  laureas,  nee  si  per  auras 
Pegasea  veherere  penna. 

Cessere  saltus  ninguidi,  et  Alpium 
Inserta  coelo  culmina,  cum  pater 
Romanus  oraret,  propinquae  ut 
Subjiceres  humeros  ruinae. 

Defensa  Roma,  et  Capta  Valentia, 
Coacta  pacem  Parthenope  pati, 
Fama  tui  Segusianus 

Barbarica  face  liberatus. 

Aequor  procellis  terra  paludibus, 
Armis  BiiiTANNUS,  moenia  scculis 
Invicta  longis,  insolentes 
Muniorant  animos  Caletum : 

Loraena  virtus,  sueta  per  invia 
Noil  usitatum  carpere  tramitem, 
Invicta  dovincendo,  famam 
Laude  nova  veterem  refellit. 

Ferox  Britannus  viribus  antehac, 
Gallisque  semper  cladibus  imminens, 
Vix  se  putat  securum  ab  hoste 
Fluctibus  Oceani  diremtus. 

Regina,   pacem  nescia  perpeti. 
Jam  sprota  inoeret  foedera,  jam  Dei 
Iram  timet  sibi  immineutem, 
Vindicis  et  furiae  flagellum. 

Civos  ot  hostes  jam  paritor  suos 
Odit  pavetquo,  et  civium  et  hostium 
Hirudo  communis,  cruorom 
Aoque  avide  sitiens  utrumque. 


Post  Victos  Caletes  289 

Huic  luce  terror  Martiiis  assonat, 
Diraeque  caedis  mens  sibi  conscia, 
Umbraeque  nocturnae  quietem 
Terrificis  agitant  figuris. 

Sic  laesa  poenas  Justitia  expetit, 
Fastus  superbos  sic  Xemesis  premit, 
Sic  mitibus  justisque  praebet 
Mitis  opem  Deus  atque  iustus. 

Translation' 

(hy  H.   Bonnevie,   L-es-L.,    Cnirerslti/  of  Paris). 

Ce  n'est  ni  le  fuseau  des  Parques,  ni  la  roue 

De  la  fortune  helas  I    qui  va  toujours  tournant, 

Ni  les  astres  brillants  dont  la  course  se  joue 

Au  ciel  le  plus  profond,  d'un  vaste  glissement, 

Cest  le  setd  Createur  qui  gouverne  le  monde, 

C'est  lui  seul  qui  maintient  toujours  aux  memes  lieux 

La  terre  ou  nous  vivons,  lui  qui  commande  a  I'onde 

De  faire  tournoyer  sans  cesse  ses  flots  bleus, 

Lui  qui  fait  succeder  dans  la  celeste  nue 

La  nuit  sombre  au  jour  clair,  le  jour  clair  a  la  nuit, 

Lui  qui  fait  triompher  la  vertu  retenue 

Et  punit  la  superbe  iusolente ;    c'est  lui 

Qui  trouble  la  victoire  en  y  melant  des  larmes, 

Et  donne  le  succes  pour  egayer  les  pleurs. 

L'exemple  en  est  recent :    il  a  brise  les  armes 

De  ce  roi,  maintenant  courbe  sous  les  malheurs. 

Que  jadis  dans  son  sein  la  Fortime  frivole 

Endormait  mollement,  et  dont  le  nom  heureux 

De  peuple  en  peuple  allait  comme  I'oiseau  qui  vole. 

Toi-meme,  roi  franjais,  Henri  tres  valeureux, 

Dont  la  nef  si  longtemps,  poussee  a  pleine  voile 

Par  un  zephyr  clement,  evita  tout  ecueil, 

Le  destin  quelquefois  fit  paUr  ton  etoile. 

Mais  lui  s'est  entete  dans  un  coupable  orgueil, 

L'orgueil  qui  perd  aussi  son  fila  le  roi  d'Espagne 

Pareillement  enfle  d'orde  presomption 

Et  toi  qu'une  vertu  si  modeste  accompagne, 
'  This  and  the  following  French  translation  were  placed  equal  for  the 
Steele  Prize  offered  to  students  at  the  University  of  Paris. 
V 


290  Poems  and  Translations 

Toi  qui  gardes  toujours  rhumble  condition 

D'homme  soumis  aux  Dieux,  toi  qui  pleures  tes  fautes 

Quand  tu  les  reconnais,  Dieu  te  cherit,  t'entend 

Et  te  comble  a  plaisir  des  faveurs  les  plus  hautes. 

Meme  il  t'en  a  donne  plus  d'un  signs  eclatant: 

La  nuit  developpait  ses  longs  voiles  funebres 

Sous  le  bouc  encorne,  plongeant  ces  pays  froids 

Dans  le  deuil  attriste  d'eternelles  tenebres ; 

L'apre  hiver  raidissait  les  branches  dans  les  bois ; 

Les  vents  charges  de  neige  a  travers  le  ciel  bistre 

Galopaient ;    lea  cours  d'eau  geles  ne  coulaient  plus ; 

Sur  les  champs  desertes  I'Horreur  pesait,  sinistre  .   .   .   . 

Mais  des  que  les  Fran9ais  se  furent  resolus, 

Sous  le  commandement  du  noble  due  de  Guise, 

A  mener  hors  des  camps  leurs  gonfanons  vainqueurs, 

Un  Zephyre  riant  vint  pourchasser  la  bise, 

Et  I'hiver  moins  piquant  tempera  ses  rigueurs ; 

Sur  les  sillons  seches  creverent  les  nuages ; 

Neptune  retablit  le  calme  dans  les  flots, 

Eole,  son  second,  apaisa  les  orages 

Et  les  tint  desormais  dans  leurs  antres  enelos ; 

II  ne  laissa  dehors  qu'une  brise  elements 

Pour  pousser  des  Fran9ais  les  nefs  sur  I'Ocean ; 

Aux  champs  ou  les  Anglais,  en  leur  fureur  demente, 

Avaient  porte  le  feu,  le  mort  et  le  neant, 

L'Abondance  vida  sa  corne,  bienveillante. 

Mais  lorsque  les  cites  eurent  donne  I'abri 

De  leurs  epais  remparts  a  la  troupe  vaillante 

Qui  sous  Guise  marchait,  vite  I'hiver  reprit 

Son  courroux.     De  nouveau  les  tempetes  surgissent, 

Les  fleuves  arretes  en  marbre  sont  figes, 

Les  champs,  abandonnes,  sous  la  neige  blanchissent, 

Et  I'horrible  Aquilon,  menagant  de  dangers 

Bat  a  nouveau  les  flots  de  ses  ailes  rapides  .... 

Cependant  les  remparts  de  marais  entour^s 

Ne  purent  resister  aux  elans  intr^pides 

Des  soldats  d'Henri  deux.     Vainement  les  marais 

Entoures  de  remparts  drcsserent  leur  barriere 

Centre  oux  :    car  ils  allaieut  irresistiblement. 

Et  toi,  prince  fameux  dent  la  Lorraine  est  fiere, 


Post  Victos  Caletes  291 

Mignon  tant  fortune  de  notre  Dieu  clement, 

Toi  dont  il  a  choisi  les  armes  redoutables 

Pour  chatier  I'orgueil,  les  ages  a  venir 

Peut-etre  hesiteront  a  croire  veritables 

Les  exploits  qu'en  un  an  tu  sus  faire  tenir. 

lis  douteraient  encor,  meme  si  sur  ses  ailes 

Pegase  t'avait  pris  et  porte  par  les  airs. 

Tu  vainquis  I'Alpe  enorme  aux  neiges  eternelles, 

Dressant  jusques  au  ciel  Torgueil  des  monts  deserts, 

Et  courus  empecher  de  tes  fortes  epaules 

Que  du  saint  pape  Paul,  le  puissance  tombat. 

Ta  vaillance  eut  tot  fait  de  renverser  les  roles : 

Rome  put  respirer,  Valence  succomba, 

Naples  n'obtint  la  paix  qu'a  force  de  suppliques, 

Et  de  tous  tes  hauts  faits  le  bruit  dans  I'air  epars 

Sauva  le  Piemont  des  brandona  germaniques 

Les  flots  tempetueux,  les  marais,  les  remparts 

Dont  nul  n'avait  jamais  viole  la  ceinture, 

Avaient  mis  la  superbe  au  coeur  des  Calaisiens. 

Ton  merite  pourtant  sut  en  cette  aventure 

Par  un  nouvel  exploit  eclipser  les  anciens. 

Car  tu  vaincs  et  n'es  pas  vaincu ;    car  ton  courage 

Sait  trouver  des  chemins  inconnus  jusqu'a  toi   .    .    . 

Done  Calais  est  repris ;    I'Anglais  pleure  de  rage, 

Lui,  toujours  le  vainqueur,  lui,  I'eternel  effroi 

De  la  France  du  Nord,  il  fuit  et  c'est  a  peine 

Si  sur  les  flots  marins  il  se  pent  delivrer 

De  la  peur  des  Franjais.     Cependant  que  la  reine 

Qui  detesta  la  paix,  lors  se  prend  a  pleurer 

D'avoir  des  vieux  traites  viole  la  promesse ; 

EUe  craint  de  son  Dieu  le  menajant  courroux, 

Elle  craint  d'Alecton  la  fureur  vengeresse, 

Les  Fran9ais,  ses  sujets,  elle  craint  tout  et  tous ; 

Elle  a  soif  de  leur  sang,  comme  une  hydro  feroce ; 

Mars  lui  fait  redouter  que  le  Fran9ais  vainqueur 

Batte  encor  ses  soldats,  le  souvenir  atroce 

De  ses  crimes  passes  vient  bourreler  son  coeur. 

Et,  quand  la  nuit  enfin  developpe  son  ombre, 

C'est  en  vain  qu'elle  attend  I'oubli  du  doux  Sommeil ; 

Elle  voit  se  dresser  des  fantomes  sans  nombre, 

Des  fantomes  blafards,  taches  de  sang  vermeil  .... 


292  Poems  and  Translations 

Efc  c'est  ainsi  que  Dieu,  dans  sa  puissance  auguste, 
Sait  chatier  I'orgueil  au  front  trop  haut  monte, 
C'est  ainsi  qu'il  cherit  le  mortel  bon  et  juste 
En  aa  toute  justice  et  sa  toute  bonte. 

Translation 

(reprinted  from  "  Beliques  of  Father  Prout  "  in  Bohn'g 
Illustrated  Library,  1866) 

Henry !    let  none  commend  to  thee 

FATE,  FORTUNE,  DOOM,  or  DESTINY, 

Or  STAR  in  heaven's  high  canopy, 

With  magic  glow 
Shining  on  man's  nativity. 

For  weal  or  woe. 

Rather,  0  king  !    here  recognise 

A  PROVIDENCE  all  just,  all  wise. 

Of  every  earthly  enterprise 

The  hidden  mover ; 
Aye  casting  calm  complacent  eyes 

Down  on  thy  Louvre. 

Prompt  to  assume  the  right's  defence, 
Mercy  unto  the  meek  dispense, 
Curb  the  rude  jaws  of  insolence 

With  bit  and  bridle. 
And  scourge  the  chiel  whose  frankincense 

Burns  for  an  idol. 

Who,  his  triumphant  course  amid, 
Who  smote  the  monarch  of  Madrid, 
And  bade  Pavia's  victor  bid 

To  power  farewell  ? 
Once  Europe's  arbiter,  now  hid 

In  hermit's  cell. 

Thou,  too,  hast  known  misfortune's  blast ; 
Tempests  have  beat  thy  stately  mast 
And  nigh  upon  the  breakers  cast 

Thy  gallant  ship  : 
But  now  the  hurricane  is  past — 

Hushed  is  the  deep. 


Post  Victos  Caletes  293 

For  PHILIP,  lord  of  ARAGON, 

Of  haughty  CHARLES  the  haughty  son, 

The  clouds  still  gather  dark  and  dun, 

The  sky  still  scowls ; 
And  round  his  gorgeous  galleon 

The  tempest  howls. 

Thou,  when  th'  Almighty  ruler  dealt 
The  blows  thy  kingdom  lately  felt, 
Thy  brow  unhelmed,  unbound  thy  belt. 

Thy  feet  unshod. 
Humbly  before  the  chastener  knelt. 

And  kissed  the  rod. 

Pardon  and  peace  thy  penance  bought; 
Joyful  the  seraph  Mercy  brought 
The  olive-bough,  with  blessing  fraught 

For  thee  and  France ; — 
God  for  thy  captive  kingdom  wrought 

Deliverance. 

'Twas  dark  and  drear !    'twas  winter's  reign ! 
Grim  horror  walked  the  lonesome  plain; 
The  ice  held  bound  with  crystal  chain 

Lake,  flood,  and  rill ; 
And  dismal  piped  the  hurricane 

His  music  shrill. 

But  when  the  gallant  GUISE  displayed 
The  flag  of  France,  and  drew  the  blade, 
Straight  the  obsequious  season  bade 

Its  rigour  cease ; 
And,  lowly  crouching,  homage  paid 

The  Fleur  de  Lys. 

Winter  his  violence  withheld. 
His  progeny  of  tempests  quelled. 
His  canopy  of  clouds  dispelled, 

Unveil'd  the  sun — 
And  blithesome  days  unparalleled 

Began  to  run. 


294  Poems  and  Translations 

'Twas  then  beleaguered  Calais  found, 
With  swamps  and  marshes  fenced  around 
With  counterscarp,  and  moat,  and  mound. 

And  yawning  trench, 
Vainly  her  hundred  bulwarks  frowned 

To  stay  the  French. 

Guise !    child  of  glory  and  Lorraine, 
Ever  thine  house  hath  proved  the  bane 
Of  France's  foes !    aye  from  the  chain 

Of  slavery  kept  her, 
And  in  the  teeth  of  haughty  Spain 

Upheld  her  sceptre. 

Scarce  will  a  future  age  believe 

The  deeds  one  year  saw  thee  achieve : 

Fame  in  her  narrative  should  give 

Thee  magic  pinions 
To  range,  with  free  prerogative, 

All  earth's  dominions. 

What  were  the  year's  achievements  ?    first. 
Yon  Alps  their  barrier  saw  thee  burst, 
To  bruise  a  reptile's  head,  who  durst, 

With  viper  sting, 
Assail  (ingratitude  accurst ! ) 

Rome's  Pontiff-King. 

To  rescue  Rome,  capture  Plaisance, 
Make  Naples  yield  the  claims  of  France, 
While  the  mere  shadow  of  thy  lance 

O'erawed  the  Turk  :  — 
Such  was,  within  the  year's  expanse, 

Thy  journey-work. 

But  Calais  yet  remained  unwon — 

Calais,  stronghold  of  Albion, 

Her  zone  begirt  with  blade  and  gun, 

In  all  the  pomp 
And  pride  of  war  ;    fierce  Amazon  ! 

Queen  of  a  swamp ! 


Post  Victos  Caletes  295 

But  even  she  hath  proven  frail, 
Her  walls  and  swamps  of  no  avail ; 
What  citadel  may  Guise  not  scale. 

Climb,  storm,  and  seize? 
What  foe  before  thee  may  not  quail, 

0  gallant  Guise ! 

Thee  let  the  men  of  England  dread. 
Whom  Edward  erst  victorious  led. 
Right  joyful  now  that  ocean's  bed 

Between  them  rolls 
And  thee  !  — that  thy  triumphant  tread 

Yon  wave  controls. 

Let  ruthless  Mary  learn  from  hence 
That  Perfidy's  a  foul  offence ; 
That  falsehood  hath  its  recompense. 

That  treaties  broken 
The  anger  of  Omnipotence 

At  length  have  woken. 

May  evil  counsels  prove  the  bane 
And  curse  of  her  unhallowed  reign ; 
Remorse,  with  its  disastrous  train. 

Infest  her  palace ; 
And  may  she  of  God's  vengeance  drain 

The  brimming  chalice. 

Translation' 

(by  H.  Petitmangin,  Paris  University). 

Ce  n'est  ni  du  destin  les  Parques  confidentes, 
Ni  la  fortune  avec  ses  caprices  divers, 
Ni  le  pouvoir  secret  des  etoiles  mouvantes, 
C'est  le  Dieu  createur  qui  mene  I'Univers. 

Sur  sa  base  immobile  il  afiFermit  la  terre, 
II  roule  incessamment  les  tourbillons  des  eaux. 
Par  lui  I'obscurite  succede  a  la  lumiere. 
Par  lui  le  jour  renait  avec  des  feux  nouveaux. 
^  Steele  Prize  Translation. 


296  Poems  and  Translations 

Au  coeur  humble  et  paisible  il  donne  la  puissance, 
Son  frein  sait  moderer  I'impetueux  orgueil, 
II  fait  coulcr  les  pleurs  des  vainqueurs  qu'on  encense, 
Le  triomphe,  par  lui,  vient  rejouir  le  deuil. 

N'en  allons  pas  chercher  une  preuve  lointaine : 
II  git,  brise,  dechu  de  ses  ambitions, 
Celui  que  la  Fortune  attentive  et  sereine 
Promenait  glorieux  parmi  les  nations. 

Et  toi,  que  la  vertu,  comma  un  vent  favorable, 
Dirigeait  sur  la  mer  de  la  felicite, 
Henri,  tu  sais  aussi  le  fracas  effroyable 
Des  tempetes  soufflant  sous  le  ciel  irrite. 

Mais  I'autre  est  sans  repit  puni  de  son  audace, 
II  git  sous  les  debris  de  son  faste  pervers ; 
Et  voici  que  Philippe,  heritier  de  sa  race, 
Enfle  du  meme  orgueil,  sent  les  memes  ravers. 

Pour  toi,  qui  sais  qu'au  ciel  appartiant  la  puissance. 
Que  la  faute  ne  paut  s'effacer  sans  las  pleurs, 
Dieu,  paternel  et  doux,  combla  ton  esperanca 
Et  joint  a  ses  bienfaits  de  nouvelles  faveurs. 

II  montre  maintenant,  par  des  preuvas  certaines, 
Que  sa  grace  est  rendua  a  tes  efforts  heureux : 
L'hivar  avait  longtemps  etendu  sur  les  plaines 
D'une  eternelle  nuit  le  voile  tenebreux ; 

Pleins  de  neige  les  vents  fendaient  I'air  froid  et  morne, 
Les  fleuves  s'arretaient  sous  le  poids  des  gla9ons. 
La  sombre  horreur  planait  a  Thorizon  sans  borne, 
Sur  las  champs  desoles  que  fuyaient  las  colons. 

Mais  lorsque  de  son  camp  une  troupe  fran9aise 
Sortit  armee,   avec  Guise  pour  general, 
Au  temps  meme  oii  froid  sur  la  terre  encor  pese, 
On  sentit  la  tiedeur  d'un  air  moins  glacial. 

L'hiver  sans  aiguillon,  se  souteuant  a  peine, 
De  son  apre  froidure  amoiudrit  les  dangers, 
Les  champs  resterent  sees:    I'atmosphere  sereine 
Retint  la  pluie  au  fond  des  nuages  legers. 


Post  Victos  Caletes  297 

Neptune  se  calma  sur  la  plaine  liquide ; 
Eole,  emprisonnant  tous  ses  vents  apaises 
Dans  son  antre  profond,  ne  lacha  plus  la  bride 
Qu'a  ceux  qui  dirigeaient  les  navires  fran9ais. 

La  campagne  naguere  etait  sterile  et  morne, 
Elle  fumait  des  feux  qu'allumaient  les  Anglais; 
Mais  bientot  I'Abondance  eut  verse  de  sa  corne 
De  riantes  moissons  sur  les  champs  desoles. 

Et  des  que  le  Fran9ais  fut  rentre  dans  ses  forts, 
L'hiver,  auparavant  si  clement  et  si  doux, 
De  tempetes  s'arma  pour  de  nouveaux  efforts, 
Et  reprit,  plus  terrible  encore,  son  courroux. 

Les  fleuves  sous  la  glace  en  vain  cherchent  passage ; 
Sous  leur  linceul  de  neige  au  loin  dorment  les  champs ; 
Sous  I'Aquilon  strident  les  Oceans  font  rage 
Fouettes  par  I'aile  horrible  et  sifflante  des  vents. 

lis  n'ont  done  pu  briser  les  efforts  de  la  France, 
Ces  remparts  defendus  par  I'eau  de  toutes  parts, 
lis  n'ont  point  arrete  I'elan  de  sa  vaillance, 
Ces  fosses  proteges  par  d'orgueilleux  remparts. 

O  favori  du  ciel,  o  Prince  de  Lorraine, 

Toi  qui  re9us  de  Dieu  le  role  glorieux 

De  courber  sous  le  poids  de  ta  main  souveraine 

De  tes  fiers  ennemis  les  fronts  audacieux, 

Les  siecles  a  venir  voudront  a  peine  croire 
Que  ta  valeiir  durant  le  cours  de  douze  mois, 
Ait  pu  recueillir  tant  de  lauriers  et  de  gloire, 
Lors  meme  que  Pegase  eut  hate  tes  exploits. 

Des  Alpes  les  sommets  neigeux,  leur  haute  chaine, 
Qui  menace  le  ciel,  font  ouvert  un  chemin, 
Quand  le  Romain  sentant  sa  ruine  proohaine 
Te  demandait  I'appui  de  ta  vaillante  main. 

Tu  sauvas  Rome  et  tu  t'emparas  de  Valence ; 
Parthenope  rebelle  enfin  dut  t'obeir ; 
Au  seul  bruit  de  ton  nom  devant  sa  delivrance 
Suze,  du  feu  sauvee,  a  vu  I'ennemi  fuir. 


298  Poems  and  Translations 

Sur  mer,  les  ouragans,  du  cote  de  la  terre, 
L'enceinte  des  fosses,  les  troupes  des  Anglais, 
Des  remparts,  si  longtemps  invincible  barriere, 
Avaient  nourri  I'orgueil  confiant  de  Calais. 

Mais  ton  courage  a  qui  rien  n'est  inaccessible, 
S'ouvrant  dans  I'inconnu  de  glorieux  sentiers. 
Fait  oublier,  ardent  a  vaincre  I'invincible, 
Les  lauriers  d'autrefois  par  de  nouveaux  lauriers. 

Les  Anglais  jusqu'alors  si  fiers  d'une  puissance 
Dont  la  France  attendait  toujours  quelque  malheur, 
A  peine  maintenant  mettent  leur  confiance 
Dans  les  flots  dont  les  ceint  I'ocean  protecteur. 

Leur  reine  a  qui  la  paix  pesait  si  fort  naguere, 
Pleure  d'avoir  trahi  ses  traites,  la  terreur 
Lui  montre  dans  le  ciel  la  divine  colere 
Qui  plane,  et  la  Furie  avec  son  fouet  vengeur. 

Son  ccBur  etant  gonfle  de  craintes  et  de  haines, 
Non  moins  pour  ses  sujets  que  pour  ses  ennemis, 
Elle  mele,  sangsue  attachee  a  leurs  veines, 
Le  sang  des  etrangers  au  sang  de  ses  amis. 

Durant  le  jour,  Mars  jette  en  une  terreur  sombre 
Son  ccEur,  plein  du  remords  de  tant  de  sang  verse, 
Et  lorsqu'elle  repose,  a  son  chevet,  dans  I'ombre, 
Quelque  spectre,  chassant  le  sommeil,  est  dresse. 

Tel  est  le  chatiment  que  I'injustice  attire, 
Ainsi  brise  I'orgueil  Nemesis  en  courroux, 
Mais  ceux  que  la  douceur,  que  la  justice  inspire 
Sont  proteges  toujours  par  le  Dieu  juste  et  doux. 


VIII. 

Francisci  Valesii  et  Mariae  Stuartae,  regum  Franciac 
et  Scotiae,  Epithalamium. 

(Silvae—IV.) 

This  was  written  on  the  marriage  of  Francis  of  Valois,  Dauphin  of  France, 
with  Queen  Mary  in  1558.  It  ia  one  of  his  finest  poems,  and  displays  a 
"fertility  of  fancy  and  felicity  of  diction  which  preclude  all  comparison." 
His  loyalty  is  expressed  in  his  praise  for  his  native  land,  and  points  out  that 
the  Dauphin  would  be  by  the  marriage  even  a  greater  gainer  than  the  Queen 
of  Scots.  He  not  only  gloriines  the  Scots  for  their  valour  in  war  but  their 
peaceful  inclinations,  and  praises  highly  the  bride's  grace  of  mind  and  person. 


300  Poems  and  Translations 

Francisci  Valesii  ct  Mariae  Stuartae,  regum  Franciac 
et  Scotiae,  Epithalamium. 

Unde  repentino  fremuerunt  viscera  motu? 
Cur  Phoebum  desueta  pati  praecordia  anhelus 
Fervor  agit,  mutaeque  diu  Parnassidos  umbrae 
Turba  iterum  arcanis  renovat  Paeana  sub  antris? 
Nuper  enim,  memini,  squalebat  marcida  laurus, 
Muta  chelys,  tristis  Phoebus,  citharaeque  repertor 
Areas,  et  ad  surdas  fundebam  vota  sorores. 
Nunc  Phoebi  delubra  patent,  nunc  Delphica  rupes 
Panditur,  et  sacro  cortina  remugit  ab  antro. 
Nunc  lauro  meliore  comas  innexa  sororum 
Turba  venit,  nunc  Aoniae  non  invida  lymphae 
Irrigat  aeternos  Pimplei  ruris  honores, 
Laetaque  Pieriae  revirescit  gloria  silvae. 
Fallimur  ?   an  nitidae  tibi  se,  Francises,  Camoenae 
Exornant  ?    tibi  serta  parant,  tibi  flore'  recenti 
Templa  novant  ?    mutumque  diu  f ormidine  Martis 
Gaudent  insolitis  celebrare  Ilelicona  choreis  ? 
Scilicet  baud  alius  nemoris  decerpere  fructus 
Dignior  Aonii,  seu  quern  numerare  triumphos 
Forte  juvat  patrios,  seu  consecrata  Camoenis 
Otia :    sic  certe  est.     Hinc  laeto  compita  plausu 
Cuncta  fremunt :    legumque  exuta  licentia  frenos 
Ludit :    Hymen,  Hymenaeus  adest :    lux  ilia  pudicis 
Exoptata  diu  votis,  lux  aurea  venit : 
Venit.     Habes  tandem  toties  quod  mente  petisti, 
O  decus  Hectoridum^  juvenis :    jam  pone  querelas, 
Desine  spes  nimium  lentas,  jam  desine  longas 
Incusare  moras,  dum  tardum  signifer  annum 
Torqueat,  ignavos  peragat  dum  Cynthia  menses. 
Grande  morae  pretium  fers :    quod  si  prisca  tulissent 
Secula,  non  raptos  flesset  Menelaus  amores, 
Et  sine  vi,  sine  caede  Phrygum  Cytherea  probatae 
Solvere  Priamidae  potuisset  praemia  formae. 
Digna  quidem  facias,  quam  vel  trans  aequoris  aestus 
Classe  Paris  rapiat,  vel  conjurata  reposcat 
'  Hart's  Edinburgh  edition  gives  fronde. 
''■  Buchanan,  according  to  pootio  uaago,   has  roproeonted  the  French  as 

Htcloridat.    Mediaeval  mythology  makes  out  the  Gauls  to  be  sons  of  Franous, 

who  was  a  sou  of  the  Trojan  Hector. 


Epithalamium  301 

Graecia :    nee  minus  est  animi  tibi,  nee  minor  ardor 
Quam  Phrygio  Grajove  duci,  si  postulet  arma 
Conjugii  tutela  tui.     Sed  mitior  in  te 
Et  Venus,  et  teneri  fuit  indulgentia  nati, 
Qui  quod  ames  fcribuere  domi :    puerilibus  annis 
Coeptus  amor  tecum  crevit :    quantumque  juventae 
Viribus  accessit,  tanto  se  ilamma  per  artus 
Acrius  insinuans*  tenerum  pascebat  amorem. 
Non  tibi  cura  fuit,  quae  saepius  anxia  Regum 
Pectora  sollicitat,  longinquae  obnoxia  flammae : 
Nee  metus  is  torsit,  veri  praenuntia  fama 
Ne  vero  majora  ferat,^  dum  secula  prisca 
Elevat,  et  primum  formae  tibi  spondet  honorem : 
Cera  nee  in  varias  docilis  transire  figuras 
Suspendit  trepidum  dubia  formidine  mentem : 
Nee  tua  commisti  tacitis  suspiria  chartis, 
Rumorisque  vagam  timuisti  pallidus  umbram. 
Ipse  tibi  explorator  eras,  formaeque  probator, 
Et  morum  testis.     Nee  conciliavit  amorem 
Hunc  tibi  luxuries  legum  indignata  teneri 
Imperio,  aut  primis  temerarius  ardor  ab  annis : 
Sed  sexu  virtus,  annis  prudentia  major, 
Et  decori  pudor,  et  conjuncta  modestia  sceptris, 
Atque  haec  cuncta  ligans  arcano  gratia  nexu. 
Spes  igitur  dubiae,  lentaeque  facessite  curae ; 
Ipse  tuis  oculis  tua  vota  tuere,  probasque : 
Speratosque  leges  sine  sollicitudine  fructus, 
Nullaque  fallacis  delusus  imagine  somni 
Irrita  mendaci  facies  convicia  nocti. 
Expectatus  Hymen  jam  junget  foedere  dextras ; 
Mox  etiam  amplecti,  mox  et  geminare  licebit 
Basia,  mox  etiam  non  tantum  basia :    sed  tu, 
Quamlibet  approperes,  animo  moderare :    beatum 
Nobiscum  partire  diem,  tu  gaudia  noctis 
Solus  tota  feres :    quanquam  neque  gaudia  noctis 
Solus  tota  feres :    et  nos  communiter  aequum  est 
Laetitiam  gaudere  tuam  ;  communia  vota 
Fecimus,  et  sacras  pariter  placavimus  aras, 

'  The  Basel  Edition  has  aecendens  instead  of  insinuans. 
2  The  older  editions  wrongly  have  printed  what  would  be  eerat  instead 
oiferat. 


302  Poems  and  Translations 

Miscuimusque  preces,  et  spesque  metusque  tuosque 
Sensimus  affectus :   aegre'  tecum  hausimus  una 
Taedia  longa  morae.     Superi  nunc  plena  secundi 
Gaudia  cum  referant,  sensus  pervenit  ad  omnes 
Laetitiae,  mentemque  ciens  renovata  voluptas 
Crescifc,  et  exsultant  trepidis  praecordia  fibris. 
Qualis  ubi  Eois  Phoebus  caput  extulit  undia 
Purus,  et  auratum  non  turbidus  extulit  axem, 
Cuspide  jucundae  lucis  percussa  renident 
Arva,  micat  tremulo  crispatus  lumine  pontus, 
Lenibus  aspirat  flabris  innubilus  aer, 
Blanda  serenati  ridet  dementia  coeli : 
At  si  nubiferos  effuderit  Aeolus  Austros, 
Et  pluviis  gravidam  coelo  subtexuit  umbram, 
Moesta  horret  rerum  facies,  deformia  lugent 
Arva,  tument  fluctus,  campis  gravis  incubat  aer, 
Torpet  et  obductum  picea  caligine  coelum  : 
Sic  ex  te  populus  suspensus  gaudia,  curas, 
Moeroresque  trahit :    rosea  nee  sola  juventa 
Florida,  nee  spatiis  quae  te  propioribus  aetas 
Insequitur,  genio  indulgent,  vultuque  soluto 
Lusibus  exhilarant  aptos  juvenilibus  annos ; 
Hunc  posita  vultus  gravitate  severior  aetas 
Laetatur  celebrare  diem,  matresque  verendae 
Non  tacito  hunc,  tacitoque  optat  virguncula  voto. 

Quid  loquar  humanas  admittere  gaudia  mentea  ? 
Ipsa  parens  rerum  iotos  renovata  per  artus 
Gestit,  et  in  vestros  penitus  conspirat  honores. 
Aspice  jam  primum  radiati  luminia  orbem 
Semper  inexhausta^  lustrantem  lampade  terras, 
Ut  niteat,  blanda  ut  flagrantes  mitiget  ignes 
Temperie,  ut  cupidos'*  spectacula  vestra  tueri 
Purpureo  vultus  maturior  exserat  ortu, 
Serius  occiduas  currua  demittat  in  iindaa, 
Ut  gelidos  repetens  flamma  propiore  triones 
Contrahat  aestivas  angusta  luce  tenebras. 
Ipsa  etiam  tellus  virides  renovatur  amictus, 

'  Stephen's   1567  edition   and   that  of    Pattieon   who   had  married  the 
widow  of  Robert  Stephen  or  Estienne,  give  aegrae  instead  of  aegre. 

^  All  editions,   except  Hart's  and   the  London  Edition  of    1686,   give 
ineochansto. 

"All  editions  except  Stephen's,  Ruddiman'a,  and  Burmann's  give  cvpido. 


Epithalamium  303 

Et  modo  pampineas  meditatur  coUibus  umbras, 
Et  modo  messe  agros,  modo  pingit  floribus  hortos 
Horrida  nee  tenero  cessant  mausuescere  foetu 
Tesqua,  nee  armati  spina  sua  braehia  vepres, 
Nee  curvare  f eros  pomis  aviaria  ramos : 
Inque  omnes  frugum  facies  bona  eopia  cornu 
Solvit,  et  omniferum  beat  indulgentior  annum, 
Pignoris  hoe  spondens  felices  omine  taedas. 
Fortunati  ambo,  et  felici  tempore  nati, 
Et  thalamis  juncti !    vestram  concordia  mundi 
Spem  fovet,  aspirat  votis,  indulget  honori : 
Atque  utinam  nullis  unquam  labefacta  querelis 
Conjugium  hoc  canos  concordia  servet  in  annos. 
Et  (mihi  ni  vano  fallax  praecordia  Phoebus 
Impulit  augurio)  quem  jungit  sanguinis  ortus, 
Et  commune  genus  proavum,  serieque  perenni 
Poedus  amicitiae  solidum,  quem  more  vetusto 
Sancta  verendarum  committunt  foedera  legum. 
Nulla  dies  unquam  vestrum  divellet  amorem. 
Vos  quoque  felici  lucent  quibus  omine  taedae. 
Quo  studium,  populique  favor,  quo  publica  regni 
Vota  precesque  vocant,  alacres  accedite :  tuque, 
Tu  prior,  o  Reges  non  ementite  parentes, 
Hectoride  juvenis,  tota  complectere  mente 
Quam  dedit  uxorem  tibi  lex,  natura  sororem, 
Parentem  imperio  sexus,  dominamque  voluntas, 
Quam  sociam  vitae  tibi  conjunxere  parentes, 
Et  genus,  et  virtus,  et  forma,  et  nubilis  aetas, 
Et  promissa  fides,  et  qui  tot  vincula  nectens 
Pirmius  arctat  amor  totidem  per  vincula  nexus. 
Si  tibi  communi  assensu  connubia  Divae 
Annuerent,  Paris  umbrosa  quas  vidit  in  Ida, 
Permittantque  tuo  socias  tibi  jungere  taedas 
Arbitrio,  quid  jam,  voti  licet  improbus,  optes 
Amplius?     Eximiae  delectat  gratia  formae? 
Aspiee  quantus  honos  frontis,  quae  gratia  blandis 
Interfusa  genis,  quam  mitis  flamma  decoris 
Fulguret  ex  oculis,  quam  conspirarit  amico 
Foedere  cum  tenera  gravitas  matura  juventa, 
Lenis  et  augusta  cum  ma j  estate  venustas. 
Pectora  nee  formae  cedunt  exercita  euris 


304  Poems  and  Translations 

Palladiis,  et  Pierias  exculta  per  artes 
Tranquillant  placidos  Sophia  sub  judice^  mores. 
Si  series  generis  longusque  propaginis  ordo 
Quaeritur :     haec  una  centum  de  stirpe  nepotes 
Sceptriferous  numerare  potest,  haec  regia  sola  est, 
Quae  bis  dena  suis  includat  secula  fastis ; 
Unica  vicinis  toties  pulsata  procellis, 
Externi  immunis  domini :  quodcunque  vetustum 
Gentibus  in  reliquis  vel  narrat  fama,  vel  audet 
Fabula,  longaevis  vel  credunt  secula  fastis 
Hue  compone,  novum  est.     Ampla  si  dote  moveris 
Accipe  dotales  Mavortia  pectora  Scotos. 
Nee  tibi  frugiferae  memorabo  hie  jugera  glebae 
[Aut  saltus  pecore,  aut  foecundas  piscibus  undas,  ]^ 
Aut  aeris  gravidos  et  plumbi  pondere  sulcos, 
Et  nitidos  auro  montes,  ferroque  rigentes. 
Deque  metalliferis  manantia  flumina  venis, 
Quaeque  beant  alias  communia  commoda  gentes. 
Haec  vulgus  miretur  iners,  quique  omnia  spernunt 
Praeter  opes,  quibus  assidue  sitis  acris  ^  habendi 
Tabifico  oblimat  praecordia  cra'ssa  veneno. 
Ilia  pharetratis  est  propria  gloria  Scotis, 
Cingere  venatu  saltus,  superare  natando 
Flumina,  ferre  famem,  contemnere  frigora  et  aestus : 
Nee  fossa  et  muris  patriam,  sed  Marte  tueri, 
Et  spreta  incolumem  vita  defendere  famam ; 
Polliciti  servare  fidem,  sanctumque  vereri 
Numen  amicitiae,  mores,  non  munus  amare. 
Artibus  his,  totum  fremerent  cum  bella  per  orbem 
Nullaque  non  leges  tellus  mutaret  avitas 
Externo  subjecta  jugo,  gens  una  vetustis 
Sedibus  antiqua  sub  libertate  resedit. 
Substitit  hie  Gothi  furor,  hie  gravis  impetus  haesit 
Saxonis,  hie  Cimber  superato  Saxone,  et  acri 
Perdomito  Neuster  Cimbro.     Si  volvere  priscos 
Non  piget  annalea,  hie  et  victoria  fixit 
Praecipitem  Romana  gradum :    quern  non  gravis  Auster 
Reppulit,  incultis  non  squalens  Parthia  campis, 
'  In  Hart'R  edition  praende  is  given  instead  of  jiulice. 
2 This  lino  is  not  in  any  otlier  editions  than  ITart'.i,  Riiddiman'a,  and  Bur- 

mann's. 

'Since  Hart,  the  reoent  editions  except  Ruddiman  and  Burmann  have 

aeria  instead  of  acria. 


Epithalamium  305 

Non  aestu  Meroe,  non  frigore  Rhenus  et  Albis 
Tardavit,  Latium  remorata  est  Scotia  cursum : 
Solaque  gens  mundi  est,  cum  qua  non  culmine  montis, 
Non  rapidi  ripis  amnis,  non  objice  silvae, 
Non  vasti  spatiis  campi  Romana  potestas, 
Sed  muris  fossaque'  sui  confinia  regni 
Munivit :    gentesque  alias  cum  pelleret  armis 
Sedibus,  aut  victas  vilem  servaret  in  usum 
Servitii,  hie  contenta  sues  defendere  fines 
Roma  securigeris  praetendit  moenia  Scotis : 
Hie  spe  progressus  posita,  Carronis  ad  undam 
Terminus^  Ausonii  signat  divortia  regni. 
Neve  putes  duri  studiis  assueta  Gradivi 
Pectora  mansuetas  non  emollescere  ad  artes, 
Haec  quoque,  cum  Latium  quateret  Mars  barbarus  orbem, 
Sola  prope  expulsis  fuit  hospita  terra  Camoenis. 
Hinc  Sophiae  Grajae,  Sophiae  decreta  Latinae, 
Doctoresque  rudis  formatoresque  juventae 
Carolus''  ad  Celtas  traduxit :  Carolus  idem 
Qui  Francis  Latios  fasces,  trabeamque  Quirini 
Ferre  dedit  Francis,  conjunxit  foedere  Scotos : 
Foedere,  quod  neque  Mars  ferro,  nee  turbida  possit 
Solvere  seditio,  aut  dominandi  insana  cupido. 
Nee  series  aevi,  nee  vis  ulla  altera,  praeter 
Sanctius  et  vinclis  foedus  propioribus  arctans. 
Tu  licet  ex  ilia  numeres  aetate  triumphos, 
Et  conjuratum  cunctis  e  partibus  orbem 
Nominis  ad  Franci  exitium,  sine  milite  Scoto 
Nulla  unquam  Francis  fulsit  victoria  castris. 
Nulla  unquam  Hectoridas  sine  Scoto  sanguine  clades 
Saevior  oppressit ;    tulit  haec  communiter  amnes 
Fortunae  gens  una  vices :     Francisque  minantes 
Saepe  in  se  vertit  gladios.     Scit  belliger  Anglus, 
Scit  ferus  hoc  Batavus,  testis  Phaethontias  unda,'' 
^  This  refers  to  the  Antonine  Wall  that  extended  from  the  Forth  to  the  Clyde. 
^Dr.  Longmuir  (1871)  says:  "  There  was  standing  in  Buchanan's  time  a 

round  tower  near  the  Carron,  which  he  supposed  to  be  a  temple  of  Terminus. 

A  stone  erected  by  the  legions  on  the  wall  is  to  be  seen  in  the  Antiquarian 

Museum  in  Edinburgh." 

'  This  refers  to  Charlemagne. 

*  Buchanan  was  staying  with  the  Mar^chal  de  Brissac  when  he  wrote  this 

poem,  and  the  reference  here  is  to  one  of  de  Brisaac's  expeditions  to  Italy  and 

his  operations  on  the  River  Po. 
W 


306  Poems  and  Translations 

Nee  semel  infaustis  repetita  Neapolis  armis. 
Hanc  tibi  dat  conjux  dotem,  tot  secula  fidam 
Conjunctamque  tuis  social!  foedere  gentem, 
Auspieium  felix  thalamis  concordibus,  armis 
Indomitos  populos  per  tot  discrimina,  felix 
Auspieium  bellis,  venturaeque  omina  palmae. 

At  tu  conjugio,  Nymphe,  dignata  superbo, 
Te  licet  et  Juno,  et  bellis  metuenda  virago, 
Et  Venus,  et  Charitum  larga  indulgentia  certet 
Muneribus  decorare  suis,  licet  ille  secundus 
Spe  votisque  hominum  Francae  moderator  habenae, 
Et  solo  genitore  minor,  tibi  Regia  sceptra 
Submittat,  blando  et  dominam  te  praedicet  ore, 
Sexum  agnosce  tamen,  dominaeque  immunis  habenae 
Hactenus  imperio  jam  nunc  assuesce  jugali : 
Disce  jugum,  sed  cum  dilecto  conjuge,  ferre : 
Disce  pati  imperium,  victrix  patiendo  futura. 
Aspicis  Oceanum  saxa  indignatus  ut  undis 
Verberet,  et  cautes  tumida  circumfremat  ira : 
Rupibus  incursat,  demoliturque  procellis 
Fundamenta  terens,  scopulisque  assultat  adesis : 
Ast  ubi  se  tellus  molli  substravit  arena, 
Hospitioque  Deum  blande  invitavit  amoeno, 
Ipse  domat  vires,  placidusque  et  se  minor  ire 
In  thalamos  gaudet  non  torvo  turbidus  ore, 
Non  spumis  fremituque  minax,  sed  fronte  serena 
Littus  inoffensum  lambit,  sensimque  relabens 
Arrepit  facilis  cerni,  et,  ceu  moUia  captet 
Oscula,  ludentes  in  littore  lubricat  undas. 
Cernis  ut  infirmis  hedera  enitatur  in  altum 
Frondibua,  et  molli  serpens  in  robora  flexu 
Paullatim  insinuet  sese,  et  complexibus  haerens 
Emicet,  et  mediis  pariter  caput  inserat  astris. 
Flectitur  obsequio  rigor,  obsequioque  paratur 
Et  retinetur  amor.     Neu  te  jactura  relictae 
Sollicitet  patriae,  desideriumque  parentis : 
Haec  quoque  terra  tibi  patria  est,  hie  stirpe  propinqui, 
Hie  generis  pars  magna  tui,  multosque  per  annos 
Fortunatorum  series  longissima  Regum, 
Unde  genus  ducis,  rerum  moderatur  habenas. 
Quoquo  oculos  vertes,  quoquo  vestigia  flectes, 


Epithalamium  307 

Cognatis  pars  nulla  vacat,  locus  exhibet  omnis 
Aut  generis  socios,  aut  fastis  inclyta  gentis 
Ostentat  monumenta  tuae.     Jam  ut  caetera  mittam, 
Hie  te,  qui  cunctis  merito  praeponderat  unus, 
Expectat  longe  pulcherrimus  Hectoridarum, 
Pane  tibi  stirpis  communis  origine  frater : 
Mox  etiam  fratrem  quod  vincat  amore  futurus, 
Et  matrem,  et  quicquid  consanguinitate  verendum 
Lex  facit,  et,  legum  quam  jussa  valentior  ulla, 
Naturae  arcanos  pulsans  reverentia  sensus. 
Hie  quoque  (ni  justis  obsistent  numina  votis, 
Falsaque  credulitas  frustra  spem  nutrit  inanem) 
Filius  ore  patrem  referens,  et  filia  matrem 
Sanguine  communi  vinclum  communis  amoris 
Firmabunt,  brevibusque  amplexi  colla  lacertis 
Discutient  blando  curarum  nubila  risu. 

Hunc  vitae  mihi  fata  modum  concedite,  donee 
Juncta  Caledoniae  tot  seclis  Gallia  genti 
Officiis,  pactisque,  et  legum  compede,  fratrum 
Subdita  dehinc  sceptris  animo  coalescat :  et  undis 
Quos  mare,  quos  vastis  coelum  spatiisque  solumque 
Dividit,  hos  populum  concordia  nectat  in  unum, 
Aequaeva  aeternis  coeli  concordia  flammis. 

Translation 

(By  Lionel  S.  Charles,  United  College,  St.  Andrews.) 

Ah,  whence  this  burst  of  passionate  ecstasy  ? 
'Tis  long  since  Phoebus  poured  his  grace  on  me. 
And  whence  doth  our  Parnassus  mute  so  long 
In  antres  dark  renew  his  Triumph-song  ? 

But  late  I  marked  the  wan,  sad  laurel  fall. 

And  silence  in  fair  places  musical, 

Song's  spirits  bowed  in  grief,  the  tuneful  Nine 

Turned  but  deaf  ears  to  every  prayer  of  mine. 

And  now  the  gates  of  Delphi  open  swing. 

In  Phoebus'  grot  I  hear  the  tripod  ring. 

Their  locks  entwined  with  laurels  greener  grown 

The  sister-choir  advance,  and  Helicon 

Unenvious  sees  again  the  fountain  spring, 


308  Poems  and  Translations 

Pimplea's  fount,  that  dowers  the  gift  to  sing, 
And  glad  Pieria's  grove,  haunt  of  the  Muse, 
Her  verdurous  glory  once  again  renews. 


Am  I  deceived  t     For  thee,  fair  prince,  for  thee 

The  Muses  deck  themselves  right  royally  ; 

For  thee  they  garlands  bring,  with  fresh-blown  flowers 

The  shrines  renew ;  and  the  unaccustomed  bowers 

Round  Helicon,  long  mute  while  War  they  dread, 

See  them  again  the  choral-dances  lead. 

And  who  more  worthy,  by  the  Muses'  shrine 

Or  kingly  sires,  and  all  the  laurelled  line? 


A  thronging  people,  and  a  nation's  prayer 

Fill  the  wide  ways ;  and  loyal  love  is  there. 

The  day  is  with  us,  day  of  all  the  year 

Most  loved,  most  wooed  !     Thy  heart's  desire  is  here, 

Thy  heart's  desire  is  with  thee.     Ah,  away 

With  hope  so  long  deferred  and  coy  delay  ! 

No  more  bewail  the  progre.ss  of  the  skies 

Circling  the  world  in  tardy  galaxies. 

The  meed  of  patience  thine,  patience  repaid 

With  rich  reward.     Oh  !  had  the  old  world  made 

The  like,  fair  peace  had  lulled  the  Spartan  king 

In  Helen's  arms  and  Helen's  comforting. 

Venus  in  peace  had  blessed  the  Phrygian's  bed, 

Nor  Phrygia  in  adulterous  quarrel  bled. 

Such  beauty  Troy  might  harry  o'er  the  main, 

Such  beauty  Greece  in  arms  demand  again ; 

And  were  there  need  to  draw  the  avenging  sword 

For  wrongs  of  hers,  true  love  and  loving  lord. 

The  world  had  seen  thee,  champion  of  her  right. 

Like  Pai-is  woo,  like  Menelaus  fight. 


But  Love  was  kind  to  thee,  and  Love's  sweet  pain 
Thy  boy-heart  filled,  and  fired  thy  growing  vein. 
Not  thine,  my  Prince,  to  give  a  loveless  hand 
To  some  sad  stranj^er  from  an  alien  land  ! 
Ah  me  !  how  oft  a  care  past  comforting 


Epithalamium  309 

Dwells  in  the  bosom  of  a  hapless  king, 

That  he  must  clasp  some  stranger  to  his  breast, 

By  envoys  wooed,  but  by  himself  possessed. 

Ah  me !  how  oft  delusive  beauties  shine 

In  the  false  wax,  and  blur  the  flattering  line, 

How  oft  sad  princes,  for  a  distant  flame. 

Sigh  in  a  parchment  to  a  stranger's  name. 


Face  to  sweet  face  you  stood  !     Yourself  approved 

Your  heart's  fair  saint ;  you  came,  you  saw,  you  loved. 

Say,  was  it  wayward  pride,  too  great  to  obey. 

And  wilful  ways  that  charmed  thy  heart  away  ? 

Truly  I  ween  no  light  of  evil  fire 

Shone  in  her  face,  no  arrogant  desire  ; 

No  insubmissive  spirit  that  could  not  brook 

Control  of  law,  no  hard  and  fearless  look, 

No  bitter  scorn ;  nay,  she  is  good  with  more 

Than  woman's  goodness,  wiser  than  the  store 

Of  all  youth's  wisdom  ;  in  her  port  we  see. 

With  modest  beauty,  crowned  humility, 

And  sweetest  grace  in  all.     Ah  !  sigh  no  more. 

Fair  pride  of  France !  the  long  delay  is  o'er, 

Thy  heart's  desire  is  with  thee.     Ah  !  away 

With  hope  so  long  deferred  and  coy  delay. 

Face  to  sweet  face  you  stood ;  the  young  blood  rang 
Triumph  ;  the  bounding  pulse  her  beauty  sang. 
(Ah  me  !  how  oft  the  promise  mocks  the  sight 
For  kings  ;  deceived  they  curse  the  faithless  night.) 
Soon  shalt  thou  feel,  at  Love's  divine  command 
The  little  hand  creep  softly  to  thy  hand. 
Soon  shalt  thou  share  all  joy  of  love — the  kiss. 
And  all  love's  joyaunce  yet  more  deep  than  this. 
All  heart's  desire.     Yet,  passionate  lover,  stay 
And  share  with  us  the  joyaunce  of  the  day  ; 
The  joyaunce  of  the  day — the  night  is  thine  ; 
Nay,  all  is  ours ;  we  at  the  self-same  shrine 
Have  sought  the  gods  with  sacrifice  and  prayer, 
And  with  our  offerings  filled  the  votive  air. 
Thy  fears  and  hopes  were  ours ;  the  long  delay 


310  Poems  and  Translations 

Was  bitter,  and  our  strength  consumed  away. 
But  Heaven  relenting  brings  us  joy  again  ; 
Our  bounding  hearts  confess  the  blissful  reign. 


Even  so  if  Phoebus  in  his  Orient  car 

Climb  the  steep  sky,  what  time  no  shadows  mar 

His  perfect  radiance,  all  the  fields  are  bright, 

Struck  with  the  shaft  of  his  exceeding  light ; 

A  sweet,  soft  light  is  flickering  on  the  seas, 

And  from  the  azure  comes  a  gentle  breeze. 

But  if  the  South  with  tempests  in  her  womb 

Come  cloud-engirdled,  comraded  of  gloom, 

The  fields  are  wrapped  in  shade,  the  seas  are  given 

To  tumult,  and  to  pitchy  dark  the  heaven. 

Even  so  thy  people  veer.     Suspense  and  care 

And  joy  and  grief  alike  with  thee  they  share. 

And  deem  not  thou  that  rose-flushed  youth  alone 

Joys  in  thy  joyaunce,  knows  thy  bliss  her  own. 

Her  red,  red  rose.     For  age  with  kindly  zeal 

Blesses  the  joys  it  is  not  hers  to  feel. 

The  maiden's  whispered  prayer  ascends  the  skies, 

The  matron's  blessings,  not  in  whispers,  rise. 

Such  is  the  joyaunce  of  the  human  kind — 

And  is  this  all  1     Nay,  Nature's  mighty  mind 

Is  one  with  thine ;  she  shares  the  joy  with  thee ; 

Her  heart  is  bounding  with  thy  ecstasy. 

Look  to  the  presence  of  the  Eastern  gate  ! 

In  the  white  morn  with  longing  passionate 

Swift  Phoebus  comes  and  hears  thy  glory's  call ; 

Loth  he  departs  at  the  still  evenfall. 

Loth  he  departs ;  to  the  far  North  he  goes 

Glorying,  and  bids  the  sullen  darkness  close 

And  yield  to  light.     Earth  dons  a  mantle  green 

And  on  the  shadowy  hills  the  vines  are  seen ; 

And  in  the  wilderness  where  briars  spread 

She  decks  with  fragrant  blooms  the  enamelled  mead ; 

In  white  pomegranate  trees  the  love-birds  sing. 

With  tuneful  joy  the  hills  and  valleys  ring. 

From  Plenty's  horn  the  copious  fruits  appear, 


Epithalamium  311 

Abundance  smiles  to  bless  the  mellowing  year 
With  fair  increase — oh  prosperous  auspices 
Of  wedded  love  and  happy  auguries  ! 

O  happy  pair  in  prosperous  season  sprung ! 

O  wedded  pair,  in  love  and  hope  so  young ! 

All,  all  around,  a  world  in  happy  peace 

Smiles  on  your  hope  and  bids  your  joys  increase. 

Fair,  happy  pair,  for  ever,  ever  dear  ! 

Away  complaint !  false  Discord  come  not  near ! 

By  plighted  faith  and  holy  law  allied. 

No  day  shall  part  them,  nothing  shall  divide. 

A  nation's  hope,  and  loyal  love  is  there ; 

And  kindly  Heaven  receives  a  nation's  prayer. 

On,  on  to  bliss  !  the  auspicious  tapers  shine, 

And  point  the  way  to  Love's  own  secret  shrine. 

On,  on  to  bliss,  by  Truth  and  Honour  led, 

Pair  wedded  pair  !     Lord  Francis,  thou  hast  wed 

Thy  sister-soul  in  nature ;  womanhood 

Makes  her  obedient,  with  all  power  endued 

By  thy  consent ;  and  tender  parent-hands 

Give  her  to  thee,  and  Love  with  all  the  bands 

That  ever  Love  supreme  hath  power  to  bind, 

Ever  in  closer  union  intertwined. 

Her  maiden  youth,  her  long  ancestral  line. 

And  her  troth  plighted,  make  the  fair  saint  thine. 

Yea,  had  the  Three,  whom  Paris  on  the  side 
Of  woody  Ida  met,  given  thee  thy  bride, 
Ah,  nothing  in  their  gift  could  equal  this  ! 
Faint  were  the  rapture,  doubtful  were  the  bliss 
Compared  to  her.     If  beauty  be  thy  care 
Mark  her  proud  form  !  mark  her  imperial  air  ! 
The  stately  brow,  the  cheek  of  blushing  rose 
(Ah,  how  the  mantling  colour  comes  and  goes), 
O  maiden  youth  !     O  queen's  serenity  ! 
And  gentle  grace,  and  princely  majesty  ! 
And  Pallas'  self  hath  taught  her  every  art, 
And  Poesy  hath  informed  her  gentle  heart. 
And  Wisdom  guided  all. 


312  Poems  and  Translations 

And  old  descent 
Is  hers ;  a  hundred  ancestors  have  sent 
Her  crown  to  her  ;  and  twice  a  thousand  years 
Stretches  the  line  of  those  august  compeers. 
This  hath  no  rival ;  shrinks  each  ancient  throne 
Dwarfed  by  the  giant  greatness  of  our  own. 
Bright,  bright  the  rays  of  each  time-honoured  crown 
And  throne  primeval — Scotia  shines  them  down. 
And  if  thy  heart  desire  a  princely  dower 
'Tis  here  ;  'tis  Scotia's  embattled  power. 
She  boasts  not,  she,  the  harvest's  golden  store, 
Nor  rivers  gleaming  with  the  yellow  ore. 
Not  hers  the  flocks  that  mountain  pastures  feed, 
For  her  no  finny  tribes  the  waters  breed. 
Not  hers  the  iron  lode,  the  leaden  vein, 
Slaves  of  the  mine,  and  craven  thralls  of  gain. 
Others,  I  ween,  may  bow  to  wealth's  control. 
While  gold,  contagious,  dulls  the  hireling  soul ; 
But  Caledonia's  sons,  a  sinewy  race, 
Urge  the  wild  wood,  and  wing  the  arrowy  chase, 
To  heat  and  cold  inured  ;  the  rivers  wide 
Bar  not  their  course,  they  swim  the  foaming  tide. 
Not  ditch  nor  rampart  guard  our  country's  bound, 
But  valiant  hearts  and  patriot  swords  are  found  ; 
And  life  is  little  ;  is  not  Honour  great  ? 
And  Truth  abides,  and  Virtue  guards  the  state, 
And  Friendship's  holy  power.     8n>all  marvel  then 
When  Desolation  shook  the  towers  of  men 
And  bruised  them  with  the  yoke,  if  uncontrolled 
She  kept  her  ancient  liberty  of  old. 

The  Saxon  vanquished  fell  before  the  Dane, 
In  turn  the  victor  felt  the  Norman's  chain ; 
But  Scotia  dwelt  apart.     'Gainst  Rome's  attack 
She  stood  :  tlie  screaming  eagles  fluttered  back. 
Though  Rome  might  pass  to  Meroe's  tropic  plain, 
Traverse  unchecked  bleak  Parthia's  wild  domain  ; 
Nor  Rhine  nor  Elbe  her  rapid  course  could  stay 
For  all  their  frosts ;  yet  Scotia  barred  the  way. 
Doem  ye  a  lofty  mount  between  them  rose? 
Did  some  resistless  river  interpose  t 


Epithalamium  313 

Some  pathless  forest,  some  waste  solitude  f 

A  ditch,  a  rampart  'gainst  the  unsubdued 

Rome's  one  resource ;  and  while  she  still  could  chase 

Each  other  nation  from  its  ancient  place. 

Here  'twas  enough  to  ward  the  clans'  attacks, 

And  bar  the  wall  'gainst  Scotia's  battle-axe. 

"  Thus  far  our  course,"  she  cried,  "  advance  no  more," 

And  fixed  her  eagles  by  the  Carron  shore. 

Yet  think  not  thou  that  Scotia's  fame  is  known 

On  trampled  fields  of  crimson  death  alone  : 

Wisdom  has  smiled  on  us,  and  gentle  Peace 

In  seraph-tones  bids  War's  rude  trumpet  cease. 

When  Desolation  shook  the  towers  of  men, 

The  arts  of  Greece  and  Rome  revived  again 

In  Scotia's  bosom  ;  here  they  found  a  home 

While  Vandal  darkness  overshadowed  Rome. 

To  Charlemagne,  on  his  dim  Celtic  shore 

She  sent  Hellenic  light,  Ausonian  lore, 

Charlemagne,  who  donned  in  his  far  Frankish  home 

The  purple  mantle  of  Imperial  Rome. 

And  the  proud  emblems  of  the  Latian  reign 

Crowned  his  endeavour  with  distinguished  gain. 

He  bound  our  Scotia  in  a  loyal  league. 

Strong  'gainst  all  force,  and  strong  'gainst  all  intrigue. 

No  years  can  waste  it,  and  change  comes  not  near 

Save  for  a  holier  love,  a  bond  more  dear. 

Ambition  fails ;  War's  fury  breaks  not  down 

Our  Scotia's  union  with  the  lily  crown. 

When  France,  all  desolate,  crashed  with  a  world 

In  angry  concourse  on  her  banners  hurled. 

Ever  she  heard  our  battle-trumpets  blow. 

Ever  with  her  we  met  the  coming  foe. 

And  well  to  France  may  Scotia's  Genius  say  : — 
"We  shared  each  triumph,  each  disastrous  day  ; 
In  victory,  or  when  the  field  was  wet 
With  blood  of  France,  and  banners  overset, 
But  undishonoured,  I  was  at  thy  side ; 
As  one  we  conquered,  or  as  one  we  died. 
How  firm  our  faith  let  gallant  Albion  show, 


314  Poems  and  Translations 

And  -wild  Batavia,  and  the  crimsoned  Po. 
Say,  Naples,  if  we  knew  faint  heart  or  fear, 
Lost  city,  wooed  so  long,  and  wooed  so  dear !  " 

Such  is  the  dower  that  Marie  brings  her  lord, 
(Presage  of  harmony  and  sweet  accord), 
A  power  so  long  conjoined— fair  auspices 
Of  prosperous  fields  and  happy  victories. 

But  thou,  though  Beauty  arm  thy  form  divine 
With  every  grace,  and  every  art  be  thine 
From  the  fair  Lady  of  the  battlefield. 
And  Juno's  emulation  will  not  yield 
To  Pallas,  yet  beware  high  heart  of  pride, 
Let  wisdom  govern,  and  sweet  patience  guide. 
Though  he  profess  to  wear  a  subject-chain, 
Proud  of  the  yoke,  of  Love's  own  fetters  vain. 
Yet  deem  not  thy  weak  woman-hand  can  guide 
The  imperial  rein,  and  shun  the  voice  of  Pride. 
Let  Love  be  lord,  and  tread  ambition  down ; 
Be  patience  thine — for  Patience  wears  a  crown. 

The  Ocean,  where  the  rocky  ramparts  frown, 
Saps  the  strong  wall  and  drags  the  bastion  down ; 
All  hoarse  and  rude  his  battle-trumpets  blow. 
Rolling  his  angry  crests  upon  the  foe ; 
His  fury  batters  down  the  ancient  wall. 
The  deeps  are  shaken,  and  the  great  rocks  fall. 
But  where  he  sees  a  gentle  hostess-hand 
Bidding  him  enter  on  the  kindly  sand, 
His  rage  is  gone  ;  she  sees  her  lover  come. 
Not  in  chill  scorn  and  insolence  of  foam  ; 
He  comes  her  lover  ;  no  rude  fortalice 
Bars  his  advance ;  he  shares  a  lover's  kiss. 

So  round  the  oak  the  ivy's  tendrils  twine. 
Raised  to  the  starry  sky  and  height  divine. 
'Tis  soft  Obedience  bends  the  ruler's  rod. 
And  Love  still  follows  where  her  footsteps  trod. 

And  think  not  thou,  fair  queen  of  all  the  fair. 
Though  reft  unwilling  from  a  mother's  care, 


Epithalamium  315 

Yet  think  not  thou  an  alien  shore  to  see, 

Lands  none  of  thine,  and  kindred  strange  to  thee. 

Let  History  speak,  what  inouarchs  of  thy  line, 

Prosperous  and  great,  in  Gallia's  annals  shine. 

And  in  thy  coming  she  again  shall  know 

The  blood  that  swayed  her  in  the  long-ago. 

'Tis  no  strange  land  that  waits  thee  ;  everywhere 

Thy  kindred  gather,  and  thy  friends  are  there, 

And  the  memorials  of  their  deeds  appear, 

Dear  to  their  kindred,  to  their  allies  dear  ! 

And  one  there  is,  dearer  than  all  beside, 

Fair  France's  fairest  son  awaits  his  bride. 

All  but  a  brother  in  his  ancestry. 

More  than  a  brother  in  liis  love  to  thee, 

More  than  a  mother,  and  than  all  beside. 

By  Love  within  the  heart's  own  heart  allied. 

Love  holier,  stronger  than  a  mortal  band — 

Though  this  shall  bind,  yet  Love  hath  power  beyond — 

Love,  holy  Love !  in  Nature's  inmost  frame, 

With  passionate  thrill  thy  call  imperial  came. 


With  fair  increase,  if  kindly  fates  ordain. 

Daughter  and  son  shall  bless  your  equal  reign. 

And  in  inheritors  of  either  line, 

Marie,  thy  traits  shall  rise,  and,  Francis,  thine. 

Faces  angelical  shall  smile  away 

The  fleeting  sorrow  of  an  evil  day  ; 

Ah,  many  a  time  shall  clouding  Sorrow's  bands 

Fall  at  the  touch  of  those  soft  angel-hands. 

Oh,  be  it  mine  to  hail  the  auspicious  day 

When  Gaul  and  Scotia  join  beneath  the  sway 

Of  brothers  ;  long  in  faith  and  truth  allied 

Stand  they  at  length  in  union  side  by  side 

Though  seas  dispart  them  far,  and  alien  skies  divide. 

One  throne  be  theirs,  and  loyalty  set  sure 
While  the  strong  sun  and  all  the  stars  endure. 


IX. 

Joannis  Calvini  Epicedium 

( Miscellaneorum  Liber — XXIV.). 

This  Dirge  was  written  on  the  death  of  Calvin  in  1564.  In  poetic  form 
Buchanan  endeavours  to  blend  the  old  heathen  mythology  with  the  Calvinistic 
theology.  "There  ought  to  be  no  grief  over  CaMn's  death,"  he  says, 
"because  he  will  always  live  with  us,  his  genius  and  fame  being  present  in 
the  Reformed  religion.  Filled  with  a  '  draught  of  deity '  (numinis  havMu), 
he  merely  lives  in  an  eternal  and  nearer  enjoyment  of  God."  Buchanan 
endeavours  to  explain  the  spiritual  work  of  regeneration,  but  his  brief  and 
theistic  references  to  matters  of  faith  show  that  he  was  not  zealous  in  the 
Reformed  doctrines. 

In  the  following   pages  are   given   two   translations,   the  first  of  which 
secured  the  First  Steele  Prize,  and  the  next  the  Second  Prize. 


Joannis  Calvini  Epicedium  317 

Joannis  Calvini  Epicedium, 

Si  quis  erit  nuUos  superesse  a  funere  manes 
Qui  putet,  aut  si  forte  putet,  sic  vivit  ut  Orcum 
Speret,^  et  aeternas  Stygio  sub  gurgite  poenas, 
Is  merito  sua  fata  ileat,  sua  funera  ploret 
Vivus,  et  ad  caros  luctum  transmittat  amicos. 
At  nos,  invitis  quanquam  sis  raptus  amicis 
Ante  diem,  magnis  quamvis  inviderit  ausis 
Mors,  te  ilere  nefas,  Calvine,  et  funera  vanae 
Ludibrio  pompae,  et  miseris  onerare  querelis. 
Liber  enim  curis,  terrenae  et  pondere  molis, 
Astra  tenes,  propiusque  Deo,  quem  mente  colebas. 
Nunc  frueris,  puroque  vides  in  lumine  purum 
Lumen,  et  infusi  satiatus  Numinis  haustu^ 
Exigis  aeternam  sine  sollicitudine  vitam : 
Quam  neque  dejiciunt  luctus,  nee  tollit  inani 
Bbria  laetitia  spes,  exanimantve  timores, 
Quaeque  animo  oflEundit  morbi  contagia  corpus. 
Hanc  ego  quae  curis  te  lux  exemit  acerbis 
Natalem  jure  appellem,  qua  raptus  in  astra 
In  patriam  remeas,  et  post  fastidia  duri 
Exilii,  mortis  jam  mens  secura  secundae, 
Fortunae  imperio  major,  primordia  longae 
Ingreditur  vitae.     Nam  ceu  per  corporis  artus 
Quum  subiit  animus,  pigrae  vegetatque  movetque 
Molis  onus,  f  unditque  agilem  per  membra  vigorem ; 
Quum  fugit,  exanimum  jacet  immotumque  cadaver, 
Nee  quicquam  est  luteae  nisi  putris  f abrica  massae : 
Sic  animi  Deus  est  animus,  quo  si  caret,  atris 
Obruitur  tenebris,  specieque  illusus  inani 
Fallaces  rectique  bonique  amplectitur  umbras. 
Ast  ubi  divini  concepit  Numinis  haustum 
Diffugiunt  tenebrae,  simulacraque  vana  facessunt, 
Nudaque  se  veri  facies  in  luce  videndam 
Exhibet  aeterna,  quam  nullo  vespere  claudit 
Septa  caput  furvis  nox  importuna  tenebris. 
Hunc  ergo  in  portum  coelo  plaudente  receptus 

^  Perhaps  it  should  be  spernal. 

2  Euddiman's  text  gives  haustum,  although  in  a  note  he  prefers  hau-stu  to 
be  substituted. 


318  Poems  and  Translations 

Tu  licet  in  placida  tranquillus  pace  quiescas, 
Non  tamen  omnino  potuit  mors  invida  totum 
Tollere  Calvinum  terris  ;   aeterna  manebunt 
Ingenii  monumenta  tui :    et  livoris  iniqui 
Languida  paullatim  cum  flamma  resederit,  omnes 
Relligio  qua  pura  nitet  se  fundet  in  oras 
Fama  tui.     Ut  nuper  falso  te  nomine  Clemens, 
Te  Pauli  duo,  flagitiis  et  fraude  gemelli, 
Te  Juli  timuit  rabies,  te  nobilis  una 
Fraterna  impietate  Pius :     sic  nominis  umbram 
Ingeniique  tui  effigiem  post  fata  timebit 
Vana  superstitio :    quique  olim  in  sede  Quirini 
Triste  furens,  flammaque  minax  ferroque  tyrannus 
Transtulit  inferni  cuncta  in  se  munia  regni, 
Imperio  Pluto,  foedis  Harpyia  rapinis, 
Eumenis  igne,  Charon  naulo,  triplicique  corona 
Cerberus,  immissi  stupefactus  lumine  veri, 
Terrificoque  tuae  dejectus  fulmine  linguae, 
Transf eret  inf ernas  in  se  post  f  unera  poenas : 
Inter  aquas  sitiens,  referens  revolubile  saxum, 
Vulturibus  jecur  exesus,  cava  dolia  lymphis 
Frustra  implens,  Ixioneum  distentus  in  orbem. 

Translation' 

(By  Lionel  S.  Charles,  United  College,  St.  Andrews.) 

Well  may  he  weep,  if  there  be  one 
Who  thinketh  death  the  end  of  all, 
Or  fears  what  penance  may  befall 
In  silent  gulfs  of  Acheron. 

Well  may  he  weep  before  his  end, 
Still  shrinking  from  the  doom  to  be, 
And  share  his  sorrow's  mystery 
With  every  loved  and  loving  friend. 

Calvin,  for  thee  we  may  not  weep, 
Though  loth  that  thou  should'st  leave  us  so 
Before  thy  day  ;  no  painted  woe 
Shall  mock  thee  in  thy  holy  sleep. 
^  First  Prize  Translation. 


Joannis  Calvini  Epicedium  319 

Far  from  the  burden  of  the  clod, 
And  from  our  dull  terrestrial  care, 
Joyful  thou  climb'st  the  starry  stair 
To  freer  heights,  and  nearer  God. 

'Tis  thine  the  Light-in-Light  to  see. 
The  Light  serene,  untouched  of  stain  ; 
'Tis  thine  the  Godhead-cup  to  drain 
In  thine  unvexed  eternity. 

And  Hope,  with  her  insensate  drink, 
Comes  not  to  thee  ;  Grief  breaks  not  down 
The  angel  of  the  starry  crown, 
Nor  Pear  that  makes  the  heart-blood  sink. 

Thou  passest  from  the  taint  of  earth. 
And  far  from  bitter  Sorrow's  breath. 
Thou  scalest  the  stars.     And  is  this  death  f 
This  is  thy  day  of  second  birth. 

In  highest  heaven,  thy  fatherland. 
From  weary  banishment  set  free. 
Armoured  in  immortality. 
Stronger  than  Fortune  thou  dost  stand. 

Thou  standest  in  thine  ancient  home. 
Our  very  clay,  a  lifeless  mass. 
When  into  it  the  soul  doth  pass 
Doth  stronger,  brighter  still  become. 

Strong  streams  of  being  onward  roll. 
But  if  the  soul  be  fled  away, 
'Tis  crumbling  dust  and  senseless  clay  ; 
So  God  is  of  the  soul  the  soul. 

Without  Him  night  is  round  it  made. 
And  darkness  in  the  things  that  seem  ; 
And  good  is  but  a  passing  dream. 
And  evil  but  a  fleeting  shade. 

When  Man  hath  drained  the  Godhead-cup, 
Their  flight  the  dark  illusions  wing  ; 
And  truth  shines  out,  and  the  dayspring 
Shines  on  her,  deepening  on  and  up. 


320  Poems  and  Translations 

On  her  no  twilight  comes  ;  no  night 
In  her  dull  robe  of  hodden-gray 
Breaks  down,  breaks  down  the  golden  day, 
And  robs  of  truth  the  spirit's  sight. 

And  peace  that  none  interpreteth 
Comes  on  thee  in  their  loud  acclaim. 
Yet  think  not  that  below  thy  name 
Is  compassed  of  the  shades  of  death. 

The  voice  of  envy  waxes  dumb, 
The  fire  of  envy  reels  and  faints  ; 
And  soon  on  all  the  lands  of  saints, 
Like  some  great  tide  thy  fame  shall  come. 

As  Clemens  of  the  barren  name, 
As  the  twin  Pauls,  who  sinned  alway, 
And  Julius,  like  a  beast  of  prey. 
And  Pius  of  the  impious  fame ; 

As  all  these  feared  thee,  all  shall  fear  ; 
These  souls  of  shame  shall  know  thy  power  ; 
And  thou  art  with  them  in  this  hour ; 
Their  painted  sham  shall  know  thee  near. 

And  on  his  proud  Quirinal  hill 
That  grim  old  lord  of  steel  and  flame — 
And  shall  my  song  rehearse  his  name  ? 
These  are  the  signs  that  point  him  still. 

The  Charon-coin  he  loved  so  well ; 
The  fury  with  the  torch  of  flame ; 
The  Harpy's  ravin  without  name. 
And  the  three-headed  hound  of  Hell. 

All  powers  of  Hell  were  his  desire  ; 
Yet  in  his  kingdom  of  the  night, 
Dazed  by  the  onset  of  the  light, 
And  blasted  by  the  bolt  of  fire. 

All  his  shall  be  the  pains  of  Hell, 
And  his  the  thirsty  Lydian's  lake. 
Rolling  for  his  old  evil's  sake 
Rocks  up  tho  hills  unscalable, 


Joannis  Calvini  Epicedium  321 

Or  doomed  to  be  the  vulture's  meal, 
Or  doomed  the  hollow  sieve  to  fill 
With  water  running,  running  still. 
Or  stretched  upon  Ixion's  wheel. 

Translation  ' 

(By  R.  K.  Winter,  United  College,  St.  Andrews.) 

Saith  one  to  me,  '  Beyond  the  grave 
The  soul  doth  die '  :  perchance  he  saith 
'  The  spirit  liveth,  let  that  faith 

Guide  me  in  life ' :  for  he  would  have 

The  pit  of  Hell  his  goal,  and  pain 

For  aye  beneath  the  Stygian  pool ; 

Yet  all  deserving,  let  the  fool 
Bemoan  his  fate  !  let  him  again 

Make  mourning  for  his  coming  death, 
While  yet  on  earth  :  let  him  bestow 
On  every  man  his  gift  of  woe. 

Yea  on  his  friends,  the  best  he  hath  ! 

And  thee  O  Calvin,  tho'  thy  day 

Was  scarcely  spent,  that  Jealous  One, 
For  that  thou  valiant  deeds  hadst  done, 

From  friends  unwilling  snatched  away. 

Yet  were  it  wrong  thy  death  to  mourn. 

To  load  thy  bier  with  empty  show 

Of  pageant-mockery,  or  woe 
That  doth  bespeak  the  heart  forlorn. 

For  thou  art  free  from  cares,  and  free 
From  blind  Earth  and  her  travailing  : 
'Mid  stars  thou'rt  nearer  to  the  King, 

Thy  earthly  mind  did  shew  to  thee. 

Thou  dost  enjoy  Him  :  yea  'tis  thine 

To  see  in  light  unmarred  by  shade 

The  very  light  of  God  display'd. 
And  slake  thy  thirst  with  draught  divine, 

'  Second  Prize  Translation. 
X 


322  Poems  and  Translations 

That  comforteth.     And  so  for  aye 
An  endless  life  that  hath  no  care 
Thou  livest ;  nor  can  sad  Despair 

Those  lasting  pleasures  sweep  away  : 

Nor  Hope  dethrone,  the  drunken-blind 
With  empty  joy,  nor  Fear  can  kill, 
Nor  body  that  our  souls  doth  fill, 

And  filling  breeds  distempered  mind. 

The  day  that  took  thee  from  the  gall 
Of  sorrow,  'mid  the  stars  to  stand, 
To  see  again  thy  Father's  land, 

Thy  birthday  feast  I  rightly  call. 

And  after  exile's  loathfed  chain — 
No  Death  in  store — thy  soul  is  free 
From  grinning  Fortune's  tyranny. 

And  hath  begun  its  endless  reign. 

Within  our  membered  frame  the  breath 
Thro'  sluggish  mass  its  way  doth  take, 
That  so  bestirred  it  may  awake, 

Fed  by  the  life  that  quickeneth. 

And  if  that  breath  hath  fled  away 

The  corse  lies  dead — a  senseless  frame, 
A  loathfed  thing  without  a  name, 

A  worthless  heap  of  crumbled  clay. 

Thus  God  the  soul's  breath  is ;  the  mind 
That  hath  Him  not,  is  plung'd  in  night. 
Lays  hold  on  wraiths  of  good  and  right 

But  mocking  shapes  of  truth  to  find. 

But  waking  to  that  fairest  day 
Thy  majesty  O  Lord  to  see — 
Then  break  those  gloomy  clouds  and  flee. 

The  mocking  visions  haste  away. 

Unswathed  by  guile,  in  endless  light, 
Pure  Truth  her  fairest  form  doth  show  : 
No  closing  eve  that  day  doth  know, 

Nor  sable-crown(^d,  churlish  night. 


Joannis  Calvini  Epicedium  323 

The  haren  reached,  the  bar  is  crost, 

The  sky  resounds  with  joyful  psalm ; 

Now  may'st  thou  lie  in  quiet  calm — • 
Yet  Calvin's  name  shall  ne'er  be  lost. 

Tho'  jealous  Death  hath  taken  thee, 
Thy  deeds  below  will  ever  claim 
Their  mem'ry's  due  :  and  when  the  flame, 

That  fitful  flare  of  enmity, 

Hath  laid  to  rest  her  flickering, 

Then  every  shore  whereon  there  gleams 
The  torch  of  faith  with  purest  beams. 

Shall  Calvin's  name  in  glory  sing. 

Foul  brethrens'  twin-deceit  thy  word 

Dismay'd,  and  Clement  false  in  name, 

Pius  renowned  'mid  brother's  shame  ; 
Mad  Julius  feared,  and  owned  thee  lord. 

So  hast  thou  wrought :  the  very  shade 

Of  that  thy  name,  thy  spirit's  ghost 

Live  on,  and  mad  Belief's  vain  host 
Shall  look  on  thee  and  be  afraid. 

The  tyrant  breathing  flame  and  sword. 
Against  himself — with  raving  burned, — 
The  panoply  of  Hell  hath  turned, 

E'en  he  that  sate  before  the  Lord. 

The  Arch-fiend,  with  his  world  below. 

The  Harpies  with  foul  robbery. 

With  fire  the  Furies,  with  his  fee 
The  Ferryman, — Hell's  every  woe 

Against  himself  will  each  one  bring — 

Mark  Cerberus  with  the  triple  crown. 

Amazed  at  truth  revealed,  cast  down 
By  Calvin's  speech  fierce-thundering. 

Thirsting  'mid  streams,  adown  the  hill 
Rolleth  the  stone,  birds  rend  his  heart, 
Teareth  the  wheel  his  limbs  apart. 

Filling  the  cruise  that  none  can  fill. 


X. 

Gencthliacon  Jacobi  Sexti  Regis  Scotorum. 

Silvae — VI L,  not  VIII.  as  Ruddiman  has  numbered  it. 

This  birthday-ode,  written  on  the  birth  of  James  in  1566,  ia  noteworthy  in  bo 
far  as  it  helps  to  clear  away  some  misapprehension.  It  shows  at  once  that 
Buchanan's  opinions  had  changed  or  were  changing,  and  Queen  Mary  was 
almost  of  necessity  bound  to  recognise  that  her  own  position  was  threatened. 
The  poem  is  really  in  verse  what  the  De  Jure  is  in  prose,  and  had  the  same 
effect.  Buchanan  apostrophises  the  infant  prince  as  the  hope  of  all  who 
desired  peace,  but  parents  are  advised,  "in  verse  of  Virgilian  elevation  and 
beauty,"  as  to  the  upbringing  of  children,  and  especially  of  princes.  The 
poem  is  also  of  value  to  educational  reformers,  who  realised  in  Buchanan  one 
who  sought  to  accomplish  good  results  rather  than  fame. 

Cresce  puer  patriae  auspiciis  felicibus  orte, 
Exspectate  puer,  cui  vatum  oracla  priorum 
Aurea  compositis  promittunt  secula  bellis : 
Tuque  peregrinis  totiea  pulsata  procellis, 
Pene  tuo  toties  excisa  Britannia  ferro,' 
Exsere  laeta  caput,  cohibe  pacalis  olivae 
Fronde  comam,  repara  flammis  foedata,  minis 
Convulsa,  et  pulso  cole  squalida  tecta  colono  : 
Pone  metum,  aeternam  spondent  tibi  sidera  pacem. 
Jam  neque  Saxonidae  Scotos,  nee  Saxona  Scotus 
Infestus  premet,  et  cognato  sanguine  ferrum 
Polluet,  et  miseras  praedando  exhauriet  urbes. 
Sed  quibus  ante  feri  tractabant  arma  Gradivi, 
Jam  dehinc  pacatis  conjungent  foedera  dextris. 
Vos  quoque  felices  felici  prole  parentes, 
Jam  tenerum  teneris  puoruni  consuescite  ab  aunis 
Justitiae,  sanctumque  bibat  virtutis  amorem 
Cum  lacte ;   et  primis  pi  etas  comes  addita  cunis 

1  In  recent  editions  this  verse  Ima  boeii  transposed  so  as  to  come  after  the 
line  beginning  "  exsere  laeta  .  .  ."  which  here  follows  it. 


Genethliacon  325 

Conformetque  animum,  et  pariter  cum  corpore  crescat. 

Non  ita  conversi  puppis  moderamine  clavi 

Flectitur,  ut  populi  pendent  a  Principe  mores. 

Non  career,  legumque  minae,  torvaeque  secures 

Sic  animos  terrent  trepidos  formidine  poenae, 

Ut  verae  virtutis  honos,  moresque  modesti 

Regis,  et  innocui  decus  et  reverentia  sceptri 

Convertunt  mentes  ad  honesta  exempla  sequaces. 

Sic  ubi  de  patrio  redivivus  funere  phoenix 

Aurorae  ad  populos  redit,'  et  cunabula  secum 

Ipse  sua,  et  cineres  patris  inferiasque  decoris 

Fert  humeris,  quacunque  citis  adremigat  alis, 

Indigenae  comitantur  aves,  celebrantque  canoro 

Agmine  :  non  illas"  species  incognita  tantum, 

Aut  picturatae  capiunt  spectacula  pennae, 

Quam  pietas,  pietas  etiam  intellecta  volucrum 

Sensibus :    usque  adeo  recti  natura  per  omnes 

Diffudit  rerum  vivacia  femina  partes. 

Sic  in  Regem  oculos  populus  defigit,  et  unum 

Admirantur,  amant,  imitantur,  seque  suosque 

Ex  hoc  ceu  speculo  tentant  eflSngere  mores. 

Quod  non  sanguinei  metuenda  potentia  ferri 

Exprimet,  et  nitido  florentes  aere  phalanges, 

Hoc  praestabit  amor :   certat  cum  Principe  vulgus 

Officiis,  et  amat  cum  se  deprendit  amari, 

Et  domino  servit,  quia  non  servire  necesse  est : 

Quasque  bonus  Princeps  laxat  sponte,  arctat  habenas, 

Deposcitque  jugum  quod  vi  cogente  metuque 

Rejecturus  erat :    contra  indulgentior  ille 

Rexque  paterque  suis  adimit,  subit  ipse  labores, 

Quaeque  jubet  primus  praeit,  et  legum  aspera  jussa 

MoUia  parendo  facit,  erratisque  suorum 

Parcere  non  durus,  sibi  inexorabilis  uni. 

Ille  nee  in  cultu  superet  mensaque  domoque 

Quern  posuit  natura  modum,  nee  more  ferarum 

In  Venerem  praeceps,  sed  certo  fine  pudoris 

Casta  colat  sancti  genialia  foedera  lecti. 

Quis  bombyce  ausit  cultus  foedare  viriles, 

1  Hart's  Edinburgh  edition  gives  Memphin  ah  Aurora  petit. 

2  In  all  editions  except  those  of    Stephen,   Patisson,   Ruddiman,   and 
Burmann,  Ula  is  given.     Lllas  is,  however,  a  better  reading. 


326  Poems  and  Translations 

Si  ferat  indigenam  majestas  regia  vestem  ? 

Quis  de  lege  tori,  tanquam  fit  dura,  queratur, 

Cum  teneat  Regem  ?     Cui  non  temulentia  ttirpis 

Principe  sub  sicco  ?  patrios  quis  frangere  mores 

Audeat,  ignavoque  animum  corrumpere  luxu, 

Ipse  voluptatum  cum  Princeps  frena  coercet, 

Et  nimium  laetam  vitiorum  comprimit  herbam  ? 

Talem  Romulidae  tranquilla  pace  fruentem 

Sacrificum  videre  Numam,  Solomonta  potentem 

Palmifer  Euphrates :  non  illis  lethifer  ensis, 

Non  bellator  equus  firmavit  regna,   nee  axis 

Palcifer,  aut  densis  legio  conferta'  maniplis, 

Sed  pietatis  amor,  sed  nulli  noxia  virtus, 

Fretaque  praefidio  majestas  juris  inermi. 

At  qui  gemmiferos  victor  penetravit  ad  Indos 

Dux  Macedum,  quique  Ausoniam  tenuere  superbo 

Imperio  Reges,  aut  ferro  aut  tabe  veneni 

EfEudere  animas,  et  caedem  caede  piarunt. 

Scilicet  humano  generi  natura  benigni 

Nil  dedit,  aut  tribuet  moderato  Principe  majus. 

In  quo  vera  Dei  vivensque  elucet  imago. 

Hanc  seu  Rex  vitiis  contaminet  ipse  pudendis, 

Sive  alius  ferro  violet  vel  fraude,  severas 

Sacrilego  Deus  ipse  petet  de  sanguine  poenas, 

Contemtumque  sui  simulacri  baud  linquet  inultum. 

Sic  Nero  crudelis,  sic  Flavins  ultimus,^  et  qui 

Imperio  Siculas  urbes  tenuere  cruento,' 

Effigiem  foedare  Dei  exitialibus  ausi 

Flagitiis,  ipsa  periere  a  stirpe  recisi. 

Sic  qui  se  justi  macularunt  sanguine  Servi,' 

Et  qui  legitimos  ferro  flammaque  petivit 

Rectores  patriae  Catilina  nefarius,  acti 

In  furias  misero  vix  tandem  funere  vitam 

'  Thua  Andrew  Hart's  Edinburgh  edition,  Ruddiman's,  and  Burmsnn's, 
but  all  others  have  conserta. 

^  The  reference  is  presumably  to  Titus  Flavius  Domitian,  who  was  slain 
by  his  freedman,  a.d.  96. 

^  Superho  is  given  in  all  the  editions,  except  in  Andrew  Hart's,  Ruddiman's, 
and  Burmann's,  where  criwnto  is  employed  as  above.  .  Only  a  few  lines  before, 
the  phrase  tenuere  xnperho  is  given. 

"  Servius,  sixth  King  of  Rome,  who  perished  in  consequence  of  having 
boon  flung  down  the  steps  of  the  Senate  House  by  Tarquin. 


Genethliacon  327 

Invisam  posuere,  ignominiaque  perenni 
Foedavere  suam  ventura  in  secula  gentem. 

Haec  tenero'  addiacat,  maturo  exerceat  aevo, 
Et  regnare  putet  multo  se  latius,  orae 
Hesperiae  fuscos  quam  si  conjunxerit  Indos, 
Si  poterit  rex  esse  sui.''    [Dum  firmior  artus 
Vis  reget  atque  animum,  puerilia  murmura  dulces 
Interea  Charites  atque  eluctantia  verba 
Component,  Musisque  dabunt  rude  pectus  alendum : 
Inde  notas  discet,  per  quas  absentibus  absens 
Quid  juvet  aut  doleat  caris  exponat  amicis : 
Quae  dirimant  verum  a  falso  discrimina  certa : 
Quae  quibus  aut  pugnent,  aut  non  invita  sequantur : 
Quod  genus  eloquii  flammatas  leniat  iras, 
Quod  refides  acuat :    quae  vis  regat  aetheris  orbes : 
An  sponte  aeternos  volvat  natura  meatus. 
Tum  de  Socraticis  sese  cognoscere  cliartis 
Incipiet,  si  Socraticae  modo  pandere  chartae 
Vera  queant :    mox  coeligenis  se  firmior  aetas 
Conformet  Musis,  dignoscere  sacra  profanis 
Apta  quid  intersint :    sumet  praecepta  rebelles 
Hinc  domitura  animos ;   et  bello  et  pace  regendi 
Imperii  veram  sacris  de  fontibus  artem 
Discet.     Ad  banc  omnes  normam  si  sedulus  actus 
Finxerit  in  patrias  felix  succedet  habenas.] 

Translation 

(hy  J.  Longmuir,  LL.D.,  Aberdeen,  1871). 

Grow,  with  glad  omens  for  thy  country  born, 

Desired  boy,  to  whom  the  oracles 

Of  former  seers  promise  a  golden  age, 

Wars  hush'd  to  rest.     And  thou,  Britannia,  beat 

So  oft  by  foreign  tempests,  and  so  oft 

By  thine  own  weapon  almost  quite  destroy'd. 

Lift  gladden'd  now  thy  head,  thy  hopes  confirm'd, 

'  The  Basel  edition,  Stephen's  and  Patisson's  give  tentr,  the  Commelinian 
edition  (1594)  and  Andrew  Hart's  give  tenera,  while  all  other  and  more  recent 
editions  support  the  reading  in  the  text. 

^  All  editions,  except  Hart's  Edinburgh  edition,  finish  the  poem  with  this 
line — Si  poterit  Rex  esse  sui,  Rex  esse  siwrum.  Hart's,  along  with  Ruddiman's 
and  Burmann's,  omit  Bex  esse  suorum,  and  add  the  remaining  lines  here  given. 


328  Poems  and  Translations 

With  boughs  of  peaceful  olive  bind  thy  hair, 
Repair  thy  dwellings  blackened  with  flames, 
And  trim,  foul  with  neglect,  the  dwellers  fled  : 
Dismiss  thy  boding  fears,  thy  troublous  cares, 
The  stars  now  promise  thee  eternal  peace. 
Now  neither  shall  the  Saxon's  sons  the  Scot, 
Nor  hostile  Scot  the  Saxon  shall  oppress. 
And  stain  with  kindred  blood  the  deadly  steel, 
And  wretched  cities  waste  by  siege  and  sack. 
But  who  aforetime  fierce  Gradivus'  arms 
Were  wont  to  wield  in  conflict  shall  henceforth 
In  treaties  join,  and  clasp  right  hands  in  peace. 

Ye  happy  parents  of  a  happy  offspring, 
Bless'd  twain,  from  tender  years  the  tender  boy 
Accustom  unto  justice,  let  him  drink 
The  holy  love  of  virtue  with  his  milk ; 
Let  piety,  companion  of  his  life. 
From  his  first  cradle  even  on  him  wait, 
And  mould  his  mind  and  with  his  body  grow. 
Less  steers  the  ship  her  course  at  government 
Of  the  turn'd  helm,  than  on  the  Prince  depend 
The  people's  manners.     Not  imprisonment, 
Nor  threats  of  laws,  nor  headsman's  axes  grim 
So  frighten  with  the  fear  of  punishment 
Their  trembling  minds,  as  honour  of  true  worth. 
And  gentle  manners  of  a  Prince,  and  grace 
And  awful  reverence  of  harmless  sceptre 
Their  pliant  wills  much  imitative  bend. 
And  draw  to  an  example  honourable. 
Thus  when  the  Phcenix,  from  his  father's  dust 
Arisen,  returns  to  Memphis  from  the  dawn. 
And  with  him  bears  his  cradle,  with  him  bears 
Upon  his  shoulders,  sparkled  with  bright  hues, 
His  father's  ashes  and  due  offerings, 
Where'er  with  nimble  wings  he  oars  the  sky, 
The  native  birds  accompany  in  flocks, 
And  sing  his  praises  in  resounding  train ; 
Them  not  so  much  the  species  unknown. 
And  spectacle  of  pictured  pens  attract. 
As  piety,  piety  even  known 
By  wild-bird's  senses :    to  so  great  degree 


Genethliacon  329 

Hath  Nature  throughout  all  her  parts  diffused 

The  living  seeds  of  right.     So  on  the  King 

The  people  fix  their  eyes,  and  him  alone 

Admire,  love,  imitate,  and  by  this  glass 

Endeavour,  as  it  were,  to  form  themselves 

And  all  their  manners.     What  not  the  dread  power 

Of  bloody  sword,  nor  phalanx  blossoming 

In  sheeny  brass,  shall  out  of  them  wring,  that 

Affection  will  make  good :     when  with  the  Prince 

In  offices  of  love  the  vulgar  vie. 

And  love  when  they  perceive  that  they  are  loved. 

And  serve  their  lord  because  they  need  not  serve ; 

And  the  reins  tighten,  which  the  gracious  Prince 

Spontaneously  relaxes,  and  demand 

The  yoke,  which,  were  it  urged  by  force  or  fear. 

They  would  reject:     he,  on  the  other  hand, 

A  more  indulgent  father  and  a  King 

Takes  the  yoke  off,  himself  toil  undergoes. 

And  in  whatever  he  commands  precedes. 

And  by  obedience  makes  the  harsh  behests 

Of  statutes  easy,  nor  is  stern,  nor  loth 

To  spare  transgressions  by  his  subjects  done, 

Inexorable  to  himself  alone  ; 

Nor  let  him  overpass  in  dress,  in  board. 

In  house,  the  measure  Nature  hath  laid  down, 

Nor  headlong  in  the  manner  of  wild  beasts 

To  lechery  rush,  but  within  sure  bounds 

Of  blushful  modesty  preserve  the  chaste 

And  genial  league  of  holy  marriage  bed. 

Who  durst  demean  the  manly  dress  with  silk. 

If  Royal  Majesty  wear  native  robes  ? 

Who  of  the  law  of  marriage  bed  complain, 

Though  it  be  hard,  when  it  doth  bind  the  King? 

To  whom  would  drunkenness  not  shameful  seem 

Under  a  sober  Prince?     Who  dare  to  break 

Ancestral  customs,  and  the  mind  debauch 

With  lazy  luxury,  when  the  Prince  himself 

The  bridle  of  his  pleasures  tight  holds  in. 

And  checks  the  too  luxuriant  herb  of  vices. 

Such  an  one  saw  the  sons  of  Romulus, 

Numa  the  Priest  enjoying  tranquil  peace; 


330  Poems  and  Translations 

Palmy  Euphrates,  potent  Solomon : 

For  them  not  deadly  sword,  nor  warrior  steed 

The  realm  maintained,   nor  scythe-bearing  car. 

Nor  legion  thronged  with  dense  maniples, 

But  love  of  piety,  virtue  hurting  none. 

And  Majesty  on  the  unarm'd  defence 

Of  right  reliant,  and  unsullied  faith. 

But  who  victorious,  through  the  lands  of  Dawn, 

The  leader  of  the  Macedonian  host. 

To  the  gem-bearing  Indi  penetrated, 

And  Kings  who  held  Ausonia  in  proud  sway. 

Or  poured  forth  their  lives  by  sword,  or  stain 

Of  blood-corrupting   poison,   and   by   death 

For  deaths  innumerable  caused  atoned. 

Nought  better  surely  Nature  hath  conferr'd 

Upon  the  human  race,  nor  greater  will. 

Then  a  devout  and  temperate  Prince,  in  whom 

The  true  and  living  image  of  God  shines. 

That  whether  he  himself  by  shameless  vice 

Contaminate,  or  other  violate 

By  sword  or  treachery,  God  will  exact 

Severest  punishment  in  his  wicked  blood. 

Nor  leave  his  spurned  likeness  unavenged. 

Thus  cruel  Nero,  thus  last  Flavius, 

And  they  who  the  Sicilian  cities  held 

'Neath  bloody  sceptre,  daring  to  pollute 

The  image  of  God  with  pernicious  vices, 

Perish'd  entirely,  to  the  root  cut  ofi. 

So  who  them  stain'd  with  righteous  Servius'  blood, 

And  wicked  Catiline,  who  sought  by  sword 

And  flame  his  country's  lawful  magistrates. 

Driven  into  fury,  scarce  at  length  laid  down 

Their  hated  lives  by  a  most  wretched  death, 

And  with  an  everlasting  ignominy 

Disgraced  their  nation  to  all  coming  time. 

These  precepts  let  him  learn  in  tender  age. 

And  practise  in  mature,  and  let  him  deem 

He  reigns  more  widely,  than  if  he  conjoin'd 

The  dusk  Hindoos  to  the  Hesperian  shore. 

If  of  himself,  and  of  his  passions  King. 

When  firmer  strength  shall  rule  his  limbs  and  mind, 


Genethliacon  331 

His  boyish  murmurs,  and  his  struggling  words 

The  Graces  sweet  will  fashion,  and  will  give 

His  rude  breast  to  the  Muses  to  be  train'd ; 

Thence  will  he  learn  the  marks,  by  which  what  grieves 

Or  pleases,  he,  though  absent,  may  express 

To  absent  friends  beloved ;    what  certain  marks 

Discriminate  the  specious  from  the  true ; 

What  contradicts,  or  necessarily  follows ; 

What  kind  of  language  soothes  inflamed  wrath. 

What  kindles  it  when  smouldering ;    what  force  rules 

The  orbs  of  heaven;    or  whether  Nature  rolls 

Her  maze  eternal  of  her  proper  force. 

Next  he'll  begin  by  the  Socratic  chart 

To  know  himself,  if  by  Socratic  chart 

Truth  can  indeed  be  known :    now  firmer  age, 

Fit  to  distinguish  sacred  from  profane. 

Adapts  him  for  the  heaven-begotten  Muses : 

Thence  will  he  get  the  precepts  that  subdue 

Rebellious  passions ;    from  the  sacred  fount 

Learn  the  true  art  of  ruling  commonwealths 

In  peace  and  war.     If  careful  to  this  rule 

He  all  his  acts  conform,  he  will  succeed 

And  happily  to  his  forefathers'  throne. 


XL 

Miscellaneous  Poems  and  Translations. 

I.  HymnuB  Matutinus  ad  Christum  (Ruddiman,  Folio  tmne  II.,  p.  101) 
II.  In  Aulum  (Epigrammalum  Liber  I. — /. ). 

III.  Coena  Gavini   ArchiepiBcopi  Glascuensis  (Epigrammatum  Liber  I. — 

XLIII.). 

IV.  In  Doletum  (Epigrammatum  Liber  I. — LXIV.). 

V.  Joanni  Areskino,  Comiti  Marriae,  Scotorum   Proregi  {Miscellaneorvm 

Liber^XXV.). 
VI.  Ad  Alisam  e  Morbo  pallidara  et  maoilentam  {Elegiaru.d  Liber — VI.). 
VII.  Patricio  Buchanano  fratri  (Epigrammatum  Liber  II. — XXIII.). 
VIII.  Petro  Planoio  Parisiensi  (Epigrammatum  Liber  II. — XX.). 
IX.  In  Castitatem  (Miscellaneorum  Liber — II.). 
X.  De  Equo  Eulogium  (Silvae —  VI. ,  not  VII.  aa  Ruddiman  has  numbered 

it,  although  in  hia  Index  it  is  rightly  numbered). 
XI.  Hymnus  in  Chriati  Asoenaionem  (Miscellaneorum  Liber — XXX  VI.). 


Hymnus  Matutinus  333 

I. — Hymnus  Matutinus  ad  Christum. 

Proles  parentis  optimi, 
Et  par  parenti  maximo, 
De  luce  vera  vera  lux, 
Verusque  de  Deo  Deus : 

En  nox  recessit,  jam  nitefc 
Aurora  luce  praevia, 
Coelum  solumque  purpurans, 
Et  clausa  tenebris  detegens. 

Sed  fuscat  ignorantiae 
Caligo  nostra  pectora, 
Et  nubiUs  erroribus 
Mens  pene  cedit  obruta. 

Exurge  sol  purissime, 
Diemque  da  mundo  suum : 
Nostramque   noctem  illuminans 
Erroris  umbram  discute. 

Dissolve  frigus  horridum ; 
Arvumque  nostri  pectoris. 
Galore  lampadis  tuae, 
Humore  purga  noxio : 

Ut  irrigetur  coelitus 
Roris  beati  nectare, 
Et  centuplo  cum  foenore 
Coeleste  semen  proferat. 


Translation. 


(By  Rev.  Dr.  A.  Gordon  MitclieU,  KUleam.) 

Son  of  God  Who  wield'st  by  right 

Equal  sovran  rod, 
Very  Light  of  very  Light, 

Very  God  of  God, 
Lo  !  the  morn  bids  night  begone. 

And  her  shadows  fly, 
As  the  rosy-fingered  dawn 

Gilds  the  earth  and  sky. 


334  Poems  and  Translations 

But  our  wildered  breasts  remain 

Ever  dark  and  blind, 
And  a  cloud  of  errors  vain 

Broods  upon  our  mind. 
Dawn  upon  our  darksome  night. 

Sun  of  peerless  ray  ! 
Shining  as  the  morning  light 

To  the  perfect  day. 

Melt  our  hearts,  and  purge  their  soil 
With  Thy  kindly  flame 

From  the  mists  that  round  them  coil- 
Mists  of  death  and  shame  ; 

That  Thy  dew  may  bless  Thy  field- 
Draught  of  heavenly  wine — 

Till  an  hundred-fold  it  yield 
Fruit  of  seed  divine. 


II. — In  Aulum. 

Mnam  mihi  promissam  iubeo  numerare  Calenum : 

Abnuifc  ille  :    Aulum  consulo  caussidicum. 

Is  mihi  iudicio  suadet  contendere :    caussam 

Suscipit :    hac  quicquam  justius  esse  negat, 

Quam  mihi  dum  peragit  decimumque  extendit  in  annum, 

Pene  decern  decies  iam  periere  minae. 

Ne  lis  quod  superest  exhauriat  aeris  et  aevi, 

Vito  reum  pariter  caussidicumque  meum. 

Certum  est  nil  posthac  promittentive  Caleno, 

Hortanti  aut  aulo  credere.     Caussa  vale. 

Quaeris  utrum  f  ugiam  magis  ?   Aulum  :  namque  Calenus 

Verba  dare,  ast  Aulus  vendere  verba  solet. 

Translation 

(by  "  Rufus"  in  "  Xotes  and  Qiici-ies,"  April  6th,  1850). 

Calenus  owed  a  single  pound,  which  yet 
With  all  my  dunning  I  could  never  get. 
Tired  of  fair  words,  whose  falsehood  I  foresaw, 
I  hied  to  Aulus,  learned  in  the  law. 


Gavini  Archiepiscopi  Glascuensis  335 

He  heard  my  story,  bade  me  "  Never  fear. 

There  was  no  doubt — no  case  could  be  more  clear :  — 

He'd  do  the  needful  in  the  proper  place, 

And  give  his  best  attention  to  the  case." 

And  this  he  may  have  done — for  it  appears 

To  have  been  his  business  for  the  last  ten  years , 

Though  on  his  pains  ten  times  ten  pounds  bestow'd 

Have  not  regain'd  that  one  Calenus  owed. 

Now  fearful  lest  this  unproductive  strife 

Consume  at  once  my  fortune  and  my  life, 

I  take  the  only  course  I  can  pursue, 

And  shun  my  debtor  and  my  lawyer  too. 

I've  no  more  hope  from  promises  or  laws, 

And  heartily  renounce  both  debt  and  cause — 

But  if  with  either  rogue  I've  more  to  do, 

I'll  surely  choose  my  debtor  of  the  two ; 

For  though  I  credit  not  the  lies  he  tells, 

At  least  he  gives  me  what  the  other  sells. 


m. — Coena  Gavini  Archiepiscopi  Glascuensis. 

Praesulis  accubui  postquam  conviva  Gavini, 

Dis  non  invideo  nectar  et  ambrosiam. 
Splendida  coena,  epulae  lautae  ambitione  remota, 

Tetrica  Cecropio  seria  tincta  sale : 
Coetus  erat  Musis  numero  par,  nee  sibi  dispar 
Doctrina,  ingenio,  simplicitate,  fide. 
Ipse  alios  supra  facundo  prominet  ore, 

Qualis  Castalii  praeses  Apollo  chori. 
Sermo  erat  aetherei  de  maj  estate  tonantis, 

Ut  tulerit  nostrae  conditionis  onus : 
Ut  neque  concretam  Divina  potentia  labem 

Hauserit  in  fragili  corpore  tecta  hominis : 
Nee  licet  in  servi  Dominus  descenderit  artus, 

Naturam  exuerint  membra  caduca  suam. 
Quisquis  adest  dubitat  scholane  immigrarit  in  aulam. 

An  magis  in  mediam  venerit  aula  scholam. 
Juppiter  Aethiopum  convivia  solus  habeto, 

Dum  mihi  concedas  Praesulis  ore  frui. 


336  Poems  and  Translations 

Translation 

{by  T.  D.  Rohh,  M.A.,  Paisley). 

I've  dined  with  Gavin,  Glasgow's  great  High-Prieat, 
And  never  more  may  grudge  the  gods  their  feast 
Of  nectar  and  ambrosia.     The  board 
Was  richly  served,  yet  all  in  rare  accord 
With  simple  taste ;  and,  finely  gracing  it, 
Discourse   severe   enlived   with    Attic   wit. 

In  number  we  were  equal  to  the  Nine ; 

And,  equal  in  ourselves,  none  might  outshine 

The  wit  and  learning  of  his  company ; 

And  each  in  other  felt  delight  to  see 

An  equal  truth  and  honour.     If  one  might  boast 

Preeminence,  we  yield  it  to  our  host. 

Who,  in  his  easy  eloquence  supreme. 

Led  us,   as  Phoebus  by   Castalia's   stream 

Leads  round  the  tripping  ringlets  of  his  choir. 

We  spoke  of  Heavenly  Love,  that  could  inspire 
The  mighty  God  to  leave  his  lofty  throne, 
And  take  our  mean  condition  for  His  own ; 
And   marvelled   how   in   tenement  of   clay 
No  coarse  infection  soiled  Him,   no  decay 
Crumbled  the  Majesty  that  dwelt  within ; 
How,  like  the  lowest.  He  felt  desire  of  sin 
Trouble  His  frailty,  yet  His  lordly  soul 
Triumphed,  and  held  its  Godhead  pure  and  whole. 

So  high  our  converse ;  yet  so   light  a  grace 
Relieved  it,  that  we  doubted  if  the  place 
Were  court  or  college ;  whether  a  banqueting 
Of  courtly  scholar  or  of  scholar-king. 

Let  Jove  in  sandy  Ammon  choose  to  dine 
When  Ethiopians  heap  his  bloody  shrine; 
Far  though  he  fare,  yet  would  I  thrice  so  far 
Only   to    feast   on    words   with   great   Dunbar. 


Joanni  Areskino  337 

IV, — In  Doletum. 

Carmina  quod  sensu  careant,  mirare,  Doleti  ? 
Quando  qui  scripsit  carmina,  mente  caret. 

Translation 

(hy  J.  0.  W.  H.  in  "  Notes  and  Queries,"  Aug.  3rd,  1850). 

Doletus  writes  verses  and  wonders — ahem — 

When  there's  nothing  in  him,  that  there's  nothing  in  them. 

V. — Joanni  Areskino,  Comiti  Marriae,  Scotorum 
Prorcgi. 

Si  quis  Areskinum  memoret  per  bella  ferocem. 

Pace  gravem  nulli,  tempore  utroque  pium ; 
Si  quis  opes  sine  fastu,  animum  sine  fraude,  carentem 

Rebus  in  ambiguis  suspicione  fidem ; 
Si  quod  ob  has  dotes  saevis  j  aetata  procellis 

Fugit  in  illius  patria  f essa  sinum ; 
Vera  quidem  memoret,  sed  non  et  propria :   laudes 

Qui  pariter  petet  has  unus  et  alter  erit. 
lUud  ei  proprium  est,  longo  quod  in  ordine  vitae 

Nil  odium  aut  livor  quod  reprehendat  habet. 

Translation 

(hy  Rev.  Dr.  A.  Gordon  Mitchell,  Killearn). 

Should  any  say  that  worthy  Mar 
Was  meek  in  peace  and  brave  in  war, 
That  both  whene'er  he  drew  the  sword 
And  sheathed  it,  still  he  feared  the  Lord  ; 
Should  we  his  character  extol 
As  a  rich  man  of  humble  soul, 
Able  but  guileless,  and  without 
Suspicion,  where  was  room  for  doubt ; 
And  should  we  add,  his  native  land, 
Betossed  by  storms  on  every  hand. 
To  his  great  spirit  looked  for  rest 
And  found  a  haven  in  his  breast — 


338  Poems  and  Translations 

We  nothing  but  the  truth  should  tell, 
Yet  should  we  not  pourtray  him  well ; 
For  other  names  than  his  might  claim 
For  equal  virtues  equal  fame. 
But  here  is  his  peculiar  praise 
That  in  the  course  of  all  his  days 
Nor  hate,  nor  envy  of  his  fame 
Can  find  in  him  a  fault  to  blame. 


VL— Ad  Alisam  e  Morbo  Pallidam  et  Macilentam. 

Verane  te  faciea  miseranda  ostendit  Alisa, 

Anne  oculos  fallax  decipit  umbra  meos?' 
Sed  neque  decipiunt  oculos  modus  oris  et  artuum, 

Et  Charifcum  quales  vix  rear  esse  pedes : 
Et  tua  qui  semper  sequitur  vestigia,  sive 

Discere  vult  gestus,  sive  docere,  decor. 
Sed  quota,  me  miserum,  pars  haec  illius  Alisae  est. 

Inter  Hamadryadas  quae  modo  prima  fuit  ? 
Heu  color,  et  vultus  sine  rusticitate  modesti, 

Et  lepor,  et  blandis  ira  proterva  minis ! 
Heu  ubi  lethiferas  spirantia  lumina  flammas, 

Et  matutinis  aemula  labra  rosis ! 
An  tibi  Thessalici  vis  perniciosa  veneni 

Torret  ad  arcanos  cerea  membra  focos  ? 
Aemulus  an  livor  te  perdidit  ?    et  venus  ipsa 

Indoluit  formae  dicta  secunda  tuae  ? 
At  tibi  ego  infelix  senium  deforme  timebam, 

Et  cum  rugosis  pallida  labra  genis, 
Et  quaecunque  olim  longinqui  temporis  aetas 

Invida  formosis  damna  parare  solet. 
Sed  tenero  securus  eram  de  flore,  nee  unquam 

Credideram  tautum  fata  ego  posse  nefas. 
Vos  o,  quas  penes  est  vitaeque  necisque  potestas, 

Sortitae  nimium  regna  superba  Deae, 
Quale  decus  primo  fraudatis  flore  juventae  ? 

Debuit  hoc  vestris  non  licuisse  colis. 
Si  vos  forte  juvant  fletus  props  busta  recentes, 

■  Robert  Stephen's  and  Patisson's  editions  wrongly  print  tuoa. 


Ad  Alisam  339 

Et  semper  lacrymis  tincta'  favilla  novis : 
Carpite  maturosque  senes,  vetulasque  rigentes, 

Sparsaque  vix  raria  tempora  cana  comis : 
Carpite  quos  inopis  torquent^  fastidia  vitae, 

Quique  velint  annos  praecipitare  suos. 
Parcite  formosis,  breve  ver  dum  transvolet  aevi, 

Parva  mora  baud  parvi  muneris  instar  erit. 
O  fera  Persephone,  nimium''  dilecta  tyranno, 

Quem  luctus  miseri,  vinclaque  saeva*  juvant, 
Non  ego  te  facie  credo  placuisse  marito, 

Saevitia  captus  palluit  ille  tua. 
Tune  potes  virides  annos  fraudare  juventa  ? 

Et  modo  nascentem  praesecuisse  comam  ? 
Totque  animas  anima  perdes  crudelis  in  una  ? 

Heu  frustra  votis  saepe  vocata  piis ! 
At  puto  non  longum  laetabere,  si  modo  verum  est 

Ditis  inhumani  pectus  amore  capi. 
Sit  licet  et  ferro,  sit  durior  aere  rigenti, 

Asperior  f uriis  sit  licet  ille  suis : 
Hanc  semel  adspiciat,  feritas  placata  quiescet, 

Atque  bunc,  qui  vincit  omnia,  vincet  Amor. 
Turn  tibi  praelatam  neglecta  dolebis  Alisam, 

Et  viduum  flebis  frigida  sero  torum. 
Quin  animum  nostris  frange  exorata  querelis, 

Victuraeque  brevem  temporis  adde  moram. 
Quod  tibi  das,  nobis  poteris  tribuisse  videri : 

Et  lacrymas  nobis,  et  tibi  deme  metum. 

Translation 

(hy  T.  D.  in  "Blackwood's  Magazine,"  Nov.  1822). 

Hath  death  that  cheek  of  all  its  bloom  bereaved  ? 

Art  thou  some  shade  that  visits  earth  again  ? 
No,  in  that  form  I  cannot  be  deceived — 

That  step— of  which  the  Graces  might  be  vain;— 


1 


1  Andrew  Hart's  edition  gives  sparsa  instead  of  tincta. 

2  In  the  editions  of  Robert  Steplien  and  Patisson  capiant  is  given  instead 
of  torquent. 

3  Basel  Edition  gives  merito  instead  of  nimium. 

*  Stephen  and  Patisaon  reverse  the  order  of  the  words  in  this  phrase— 
sa&oaque  vincla. 


340  Poems  and  Translations 

Those  orbs,  whose  radiance  sorrow  cannot  kill, 

For  ever  gentle — never,  yet,  too  free — 
The  modesty  that  waits  upon  thee  still, 

Though  not  to  teach — but  learn  to  look  like  thee; — 

Oh !    they  bespeak  Alisa — but  those  sighs. 

What  mean  they  ?  and  that  face,  how  changed  its  hue- 
Where  is  the  joy  that  lived  within  those  eyes — 

The  lips — like  early  roses  dipt  in  dew  ? 

That  healthful  glow,  still  elegant  the  while — 
That  pride  becoming — pensiveness  serene. 

Where  are  they  ? — where  the  fascinating  smile. 

And  every  charm  that  form'd  the  maiden  Queen  ? 

Doth  some  foul  sorceress  mould  each  matchless  limb 
In  wax,  to  waste  before  the  lingering  fire? 

Doth  Venus'  jealousy  thy  beauties  dim. 
No  longer,  now,  the  goddess  of  desire  ? 

Such  was  the  flower.     How  hard,  methought,  it  seem'd. 
That  it  must  yield  to  time — to  age  unkind ! 

But  still  methought  the  bud  was  safe,  nor  dream'd 
That  fate  would  be  so  pitiless  or  blind. 

Oh  !    hags,  who  shape  the  thread  of  all  our  years. 
And  grudgingly  mete  out  our  span  of  day. 

This  life  was  not  intended  for  your  shears — 
Ye  should  have  sought  for  some  maturer  prey. 

If  ye  delight  in  tears — for  ever  new — 

Take  still  the  fruit — but  let  the  blossom  live ; 

Call  but  on  those  whose  debt  of  breath  is  due — 
Who  bow  them  to  the  sentence  that  ye  give. 

Ruthless  Persephone — thy  boasted  charms 

Ne'er  conquer'd  Pluto — he  but  loved  thy  frown — 

'Twas  this  that  brought  thee  to  the  tyrant's  arms — 
Yes — to  thy  cruelty  thou  owest  thy  crown. 

Else  wouldst  thou  turn  aside  the  murderous  dart 
From  her  whose  fragile  life  is  scarce  begun. 

Nor  give  to  sorrow  many  a  bleeding  heart. 
And,  reckless,  kill  a  thousand  souls  in  one. 


Patricio  Buchanano  341 

Beware,  hard  Queen— thine  Empire  may  be  brief; 

If  Love  the  gloomy  heart  of  Dis  can  stir ; 
Take  heed  thou  seest  not  an  unlook'd-for  grief, 

And  feelst  thyself  deserted,  and  for  her. 

Beware  in  time — oh,  jealous  Queen,  beware ! 

For  it  may  hap  thy  close  of  power  is  near ; 
In  prudence  seem  to  listen  to  our  prayer — 

To  give  to  Pity,  what  thou  yieldst  to  Fear. 


VII, — Patricio  Buchanano  fratri. 

Si  mihi  privato  fas  indulgere  dolori, 

Ereptum,  f rater,  te  mihi  jure  fleam  : 
Nostra  bonis  raros  cui  protulit  artibus  aetas, 

Et  nivea  morum  simplicitate  pares. 
At  si  gratandum  laetis  est  rebus  amici, 

Gratulor  immensis  quod  potiare  bonis. 
Omnia  quippe  piae^  vitae  et  sinceriter  actae 

Praemia  securus  non  peritura  tenes. 

Translation 

(hy  Rev.  Br.  A.  Gordon  Mitchell,  KillearnJ. 

If  it  be  right  to  give  a  fee-grief  scope, 

Well  may  I  weep  thee,  brother,  torn  apart, 
With  whom  in  culture  few  indeed  could  cope. 
Or  in  thy  snowy  purity  of  heart ; 
But  if  to  gratulate  on  good  be  part 
Of  friend,  I  thee  congratulate  on  this  : 

That  dreadless  now  thou  boldest  where  thou  art 
The  meed  eterne  of  holy  life  in  bliss. 

Vin. — Pctro  Plancio  Parisiensi. 

Fessus  Atlantiades  toties  transmittere  nubes, 

Taenariam  toties  ire,  redire  viam : 
Ante  Jovem  supplex  stetit,  et  finire  labores 
Postulat,  aut  socium  qui  relevaret  onus. 
'  Perhaps  pie. 


342  Poems  and  Translations 

Aequa  petis,  (ait  ille)  petisque  in  tempore,  nam  te 

Qui  juvet,  aut  nemo,  aut  Plancius  unus  erit. 
Saepe  ego  per  tenebras  vidi  sum  scanderet  Alpes 

Concretae  gelidum  findere  marmor  aquae : 
Vidi  cum  fessos  cursu  praeverteret  Euros, 

Et  Zephyri  lentos  antevolaret  equos. 
Non  labor  insomnis,  non  saevae  injuria  brumae, 

Non  sitis  aestiferi  cum  furit  ira  canis : 
Non  salebris  colles,  non  coeno  undante  paludes, 

Non  scopulis  torrens  impediebat  iter. 
Quid  referam  ingenium,  magnaeque  capacia  curae 

Pectora,  custodem  depositique  fidem  ? 
Eloquiumque  potens  mandatis  addere  pondus, 

Comere  res  tenues,  promere  difficiles  ? 
Et  facilem  quamvis  ad  caetera  munia  mentem, 

Difficilem  falli  muneribusque  capi  ? 
Hunc  age : '  quam  primum  volat  ille,  et  mole  relicta 

Corporis,  Eridanus  qua  Ligus  urget  aquas, 
Astra,  Deum  plaudente  choro,  novus  incola  scandit 

Plancius,  et  superum  jussa  minister  obit. 
Sis  felix  licet,^  usque  tuis  decus,  et  dolor  ingens. 

Ultima  nos  donee  mittet  in  astra  dies. 

ElDEM. 

Cura,  fides,  labor,  ingenium,  vigilantia,  Planci, 

Fecerunt  carum  civibus  esse  tuis. 
Jam  virtus,  hominumque  favor  spondebat  honores, 

Et  meritis  regum  conciliatus  honor. 
Sed  vulgaris  honos  meritis  minor :  ergo  abiisti 

Illo,  ubi  virtuti  verus  habetur  honos. 

Translation' 

(hy  H.  Bonnevie,  L-Ss-L.,  Paris  University). 

Fatigue  de  courir  par  les  airs,  et  tres  las 
D'avoir  fait  tant  de  fois  le  chemin  de  Tenare, 
Le  messager  des  Dieux,  le  descendant  d'Atlas, 

'  In  all  editions  except  Ruddiman's  and  Biirmann's  there  is  no  punctua- 
tion mark  after  age.  Ruddiman  considered  that  tho  moaning  of  the  passage 
required  it. 

^  There  seemed  some  uncertainty  as  to  whether  the  comma  should  bo  after 
licet  or  after  usque. 

"  The  two  French  translations  given  wore  placed  equal  for  the  Steele 
Prize  olTored  In  studiMitu  of  Fiwis  Uiiivorgity. 


Petro  Plancio  Parisiensi  343 

S'en  va  vers  Jupiter,  suppliant,  lui  declare 
Qu'il  est  extenue :  ' '  Termine  mes  travaux 
Ou  me  donne  un  compain  pour  alleger  ma  peine." 

Ton  placet  est  f onde,  dit  Jupiter ;    tu  vaux 
D'etre  ecoute  .   .   .  Pour  toi  vraiment  la  bonne  aubaine, 
Le  Franyais  Plancius  viendra  bientot  t'aider. 
Lui  seul  le  pent.     Mes  yeux,  qui  percent  les  nuits  sombres, 
Ont  vu,  combien  de  fois !    .   .   .   .  cet  homme  escalader 
Les  monts  italiens  aux  gigantesques  ombres, 
Briser  a  grand  ahan  le  marbre  des  glaciers, 
Fatiguer  de  I'Eurus  les  escadrons  rapides, 
Et  du  Zephyr  trop  lent  depasser  les  coursiers. 
Rien  n'arretait  jamais  ses  elans  intrepides, 
Ni  la  nuit,  ni  le  froid  qui  mord  cruellement, 
Ni  I'estivale  soif,  quand  la  chaleur  fait  rage, 
Ni  du  mont  orgueilleux  le  haut  escarpement, 
Ni  le  marais  bourbeux,  ni  le  torrent  sauvage, 
Roulant  parmi  ses  eaux  des  rocs  a  grand  fracas. 
A  quoi  bon  rappeler  la  ressource  infinie 
De  son  esprit,  egal  aux  plus  graves  tracas, 
Sa  ferme  bonne  foi  nette  de  felonie, 
Et  son  parler  subtil,  habile  a  menager 
Le  poids  de  I'eloquence  aux  mandats  de  son  prince, 
Aux  sujets  embrouilles  donnant  un  tour  leger, 
Sauvant  par  I'agrement  le  sujet  le  plus  mince  ?  .   .   . 
Je  passe  cependant  nombre  d'aiitres  talents 
Ou  Tor  ne  pouvait  rien,  ni  la  fausse  grimace 
Des  vils  menteurs  ....     Vers  vous,  astres  etincelants, 
Ayant  laisse  du  corps  la  trop  pesante  masse 
Aux  pays  d'outre-mont  oii  coule  a  flots  presses 
L'Eridan  ligurien,  deja  Plancius  grimpe. 
Et  vous,  celestes  Dieux,  en  choeur  applaudissez 
Ce  nouvel  habitant  du  sejour  de  I'Olympe, 
De  vos  ordres  sacres  ce  serviteur  accort. 
Sois  heureux,  que  ton  sang  de  toi  se  glorifie, 
Moi  je  te  pleurerai  jusqu'a  ce  que  la  mort 
Aux  astres  m'envoyant  me  surprenne  a  la  vie. 

AU    MtiUE. 

Tes  soucis  Plancius,  ton  labeur  incessant, 
Tes  talents  qui  seront  d'eternelle  memoire 


344  Poems  and  Translations 

T'ont  valu  des  Fran9ais  I'amour  reconnaissant  .   .   . 
Les  hommes  et  les  rois  te  promettaienfc  la  gloire; 
Mais  quel  vulgaire  honneur  pourrait-il  egaler 
Les  si  rares  vertus  que  ton  grand  coeur  abrite? 
Done  ton  ame  a  voulu  dans  les  cieux  s'en  aller. 
Pour  trouver  des  honneurs  dignes  de  ton  merite. 

Translation 

(hy  W .  H.  Hamilton,  United  College,  St.  Andrews). 

Wearied  with  long  cloud-lofty  wayfarings, 
Tired  of  the  star-white  way  of  beating  wings, 
With  prayerful  feet  nigh  Jove  the  swift  god  came 
Craving  but  rest,  or  proffering  mild  claim 
For  one  to  share  his  labours. 

"  Happy  thou," 
Cried  Jove,  "  to  find  so  fit  an  hour  as  now; 
For  one  can  aid  thee — Plancius  alone ! 
Him  oft  these  eyes  'neath  the  night-murk  have  known 
Scaling  the  Alps,  shiv'ring  the  crystal  ice  ; 
Seen  him  outstrip  the  east  wind  in  a  trice 
Or  fly  the  falling  zephyrs.     Wakeful  toil 
Nor  bitter-wounding  winter  gave  recoil ; 
Nor  parching  burns  of  summer,  nor  any  height, 
Nor  muddy  tarns,  nay — not  the  sheer  crag's  might 
Could  give  him  pause.     What  tongue  with  what  great  art 
Should  praise  his  wit  and  his  great  faithful  heart? 
His  words  that  made  commander  of  his  will, 
And  smoothed  the  rough,  and  the  mean  with  worth  could  fill! 
His  mind  alive  to  Duty,  assayed  in  vain 
By  guile  and  gold  ?  " 

Forthwith  he  speeds  amain 
O'er  Italy,  a  spirit  freed  of  earth. 
The  singing  spheres  loud  hail  his  heavenly  birth. 
Upraising  lauds  in  choir,  as  through  the  sky 
Comes  Plancius  forth  to  serve  the  gods  most  high. 
There  be  thou  happy,  O  glory  and  grief  of  thy  kin, 
Till  once  we  too  thy  timeless  haunt  may  win. 

+  *  ♦  *  # 

Thy  loyal  labours,  wit,  and  watchful  care 


Petro  Plancio  Parisiensi  345 

Won  thee  thy  country's  love ;    and  virtue  rare 

Conspired  with  men  and  monarchs  to  advance 

Thy  worthiness  to  high  inheritance. 

Too  poor  were  all  our  honours  ;    thou  art  there 

Where  valour  hath  at  last  the  wages  fair. 

Translation^ 

(hy  H.  Petitmangin,  Paris  University). 
Mercure  fatigue  de  voler  vers  la  terre, 
D'aller  et  de  venir  sur  I'infernal  chemin, 
Supplia  Jupiter  de  finir  sa  misere 
Ou  d'accorder  quelqu'un  qui  lui  pretat  la  main. 
"  C'est  justice  et  tu  fais  a  propos  ta  requete : 
"  Car  un  seul  pent  t'aider,  Pierre  Planche  est  son  nom, 
"  Repond  le  dieu.     Souvent  la  nuit,  gagnant  la  crete, 
"  Des  alpes  je  I'ai  vu  fouler  le  dur  gla9on  ; 
"  Je  I'ai  vu  depasser  I'Eurus,  et  le  Zephyre 
"  Pour  lui  semblait  porte  par  dee  chevaux  trop  lents. 
"  Un  travail  sans  repos,  I'hiver  cruel,  ni  I'ire 
"  De  I'ete,  quand  la  soif  nait  des  soleils  ardents, 
"  Ni  le  marais  fangeux,  ni  la  rude  montee, 
"  Ni  I'ecueil  du  torrent,  rien  n'arretait  ses  pas. 
"  Pourquoi  de  son  esprit  rappeler  la  portee  ? 
"  Cette  discretion  qui  ne  se  lassait  pas, 
"  Ce  ton  persuasif  dont  il  savait  tout  dire, 
"  Ornant  tons  les  sujets,  ne  laissant  rien  d'obscur  ? 
"  Son  genie  a  tout  faire  et  si  prompt  et  si  sur, 
"  Pourtant  si  difficile  a  tromper  ou  seduire? 
"  Prends-le."     Lui,  sans  tarder,  vole.     Au  meme  moment 
Laissant  son  corps  aux  lieux  oii  le  P6  se  promene 
Pierre,  agree  des  Dieux,  s'eleve  au  firmament 
Et  devient  messager  de  leur  voix  souveraine. 
Sois  heureux,  toi,  I'honneur  des  tiens,  leur  deuil  cruel, 
Jusqu'au  jour  oii  la  mort  nous  ouvrira  le  ciel. 

AU    MfiME. 

Diligent,  siir,  actif,  adroit  et  vigilant, 
Planche,  tu  meritas  I'amour  de  ta  patrie. 
Les  peuples  et  les  rois  gagnes  sans  flatterie 
Allaient  bientot  d'honneurs  couronner  ton  talent. 
Cette  gloire  etait  peu :   la  sachant  tot  fletrie 
Tu  fus  chercher  au  ciel  un  honneur  plus  constant. 
^  Steele  Prize  Translation. 


346  Poems  and  Translations 

IX. — In  Castitatcm. 

Castitas  blandi  domitrix  amoris, 
Castitas  vitae  specimen  prioris, 
Labe  cum  puras  soboles  colebat 
Aurca  terras. 

Castitas  vitae  specimen  futurae 
Morte  cum  victa,  sociata  membris 
Pura  mens  puris  radiantis  aulam 
Incolet  aethrae. 

Una  nee  certam  Veneris  sagittam, 
Jura  nee  fati  metuis  severi, 
Quippe  quae  rursus  moriente  major 

Morte  resurges. 

Pura  cum  puris  agites  ut  aevum 
Angelis,  quorum  studium  secuta 
Colliges  fructus  socios  secundae 
Reddita  vitae. 

Tbanslation 

(hy  Rev.  Dr.  A.  Gordon  Mitchell,  Killearn). 

Chastity,  victress  of  amorous  wile, 

Chastity,  relic  of  life  as  it  came 
Fresh  from  the  heavenly  Maker,  the  while 

Earth  was  untainted  and  man  without  blame : 

Chastity,  earnest  of  life  yet  to  be. 

When  over  death  shall  be  victory  won, 

And  the  soul,  in  a  frame  from  corruption  set  free 
Shall  dwell  in  the  temple  that  shines  as  the  sun : 

Thou  alone  never  dreadest  the  arrow  of  love, 
Thou  alone  never  tremblest  at  statutes  of  fate. 

Inasmuch  as  thou  risest  from  death,  and  above 
Thou  passest  to  glory,  by  dying  more  great  : 

To  dwell  with  the  angels  in  vesture  of  white, 
Whom  over  thou  lovedst — to  reap  in  the  sky 

Thy  harvest  of  friendship  and  stainless  delight, 
Restori'd  to  a  life  that  can  nevermore  die. 


De  Equo  Elogium  347 

X. — De  Equo  Elogium. 

Caetera  rerum  opifex  animalia  finxit  ad  usus 
Quaeque  suos,  equus  ad  cunctos  se  accommodat  unus : 
Plaustra  trahifc,  fert  clitellas,  fert  esseda,  terrain 
Vomere  proscindit,  dominum  fert,  sive  natatu 
Flumina,  seu  fossam  saltu,  seu  vincere  cursu 
Est  salebras  opus,  aut  canibus  circundare  saltus, 
Aut  molles  glomerare  gradus,  aut  flectere  gyros, 
Libera  seu  vacuis  ludat  lascivia  campis. 
Quod  si  bella  vocent,  tremulos  vigor  acer  in  artus 
It,  domino  et  socias  vomit  ore  et  naribus  iras, 
Vulneribusque  offert  generosum  pectus,  et  una 
Gaudia,  moerores^  sumit  ponitque  vicissim 
Cum  domino:  sortem  sic  ofEciosus  in  omnem, 
Ut  veteres  nobis  tam  certo  foedere  junctum 
Crediderint  mixta  coalescere  posse  figura, 
Inque  Pelethroniis  Centauros  edere  silvis. 

Translation 

(hy  J.   Longmuir,   LL.D.,   Aherdeen,   1871). 

The  heavenly  artist,  who  with  life  profuse 
The  world  endow'd,  for  some  particular  use 
All  creatures  form'd,  except  the  horse  alone, 
Who,  fit  for  all,  makes  every  part  his  own : 
He  draws  the  waggons,  wheels  the  chariot  forth. 
The  panniers  carries,  cleaves  the  fertile  earth 
With  ploughshare ;   bears  his  master,  whether  need 
Rough  roads  to  cross,  or  length  of  journey  speed, 
Or  deep  ditch  leap,  or  swim  the  river's  tide. 
Or  with  the  hounds  surround  the  forest  wide  • 
Or  round  the  race-course  wheels  in  rapid  flight. 
Or  falters  on  the  way  with  footfall  light. 
Or  gambols  joyous  loosen'd  from  the  rein 
In  wanton  freedom  o'er  the  open  plain. 
But  if  to  war  the  martial  trumpet  sounds. 
Through  every  member  sprightly  vigour  bounds ; 
When  rage  and  wrath  his  master's  soul  inspire, 

'  All  editions,  except  Hart's,  Ruddiman's  and  Burmann's,  have  moerorem. 


348  Poems  and  Translations 

His  mouth  and  nostrils  foam  a  kindred  ire ; 

His  generous  breast  amid  the  press  of  arms 

Presents  the  foe,  and  dares  their  deadly  harms; 

Prompt  with  his  lord  alike  to  take  or  lose 

The  oft  vicissitudes  of  joys  and  woes. 

So  many  aids  have  men  from  him  received. 

That  it  is  said  the  ancient  world  believed 

That  he  to  us  by  league  so  certain  joined, 

Could  in  a  mix'd  form  mingle  with  mankind; 

And  they  relate  how  in  their  solitudes 

The  Centaurs  haunt  the  Pelethronian  woods. 


XL — Hymnus  in  Christi  Ascensionem. 

lo  triumphe,  Ecclesia, 
Jam  victor  hostium  tuus 
Dux  templa  scandit  aetheris, 
Adversa  patri  vulnera 
It  et  coronam  ostendere, 
Qualis  redit  de  praelio 
Tabo  decoro  sordidus. 
Demissa  nubes  se  explicat 
Sub  Imperatoris  pedes : 
Reclusa  coeli  janua 
Invitat  omnem  exercitum : 
Vox  Angelorum  cantibus 
Venire  Regem  nunciat : 
Aether  nitescit  gaudio, 
Timore  pallent  Tartara, 
Mundus  stupet  spectaculo 
Suspensus  ante  incognito : 
Mors  victa  flet,  spes  praemii 
Levat  labores  militum. 
Cum  Patre  Proles  unica, 
Et  ex  utroque  Spiritus, 
Adeste  sic  pugnantibus, 
Ut  sint  triumphi  compotes. 


Hymnus  in  Christi  Ascensionem  349 

Translation 

(hy  liev.  Dr.  A.  Gordon  Mitchell,  Killearn). 

Church  of  Christ  the  Saviour, 

Sing  thy  triumph-song  ! 
Now  the  mighty  victor 

Of  the  hostile  throng — 
He,  thy  glorious  Captain 

To  the  Father  hies — 
Climbs  the  shining  temple 

Of  the  ageless  skies. 

Like  a  faithful  soldier, 

Soiled  with  noble  stains 
From  the  field  of  battle, 

He  the  sky  regains, 
Wearing  still  his  wound-prints 

From  the  deadly  close. 
And  His  crown  of  glory 

To  the  Father  shows. 

Lo  !  a  cloud  descending 

Spreads  itself  abroad, 
'Neath  the  feet  Imperial 

Of  our  Saviour  God  ; 
Hands  unseen  fling  open 

Wide  the  gates  of  Heaven  ; 
To  the  host  celestial 

Access  free  is  given. 

Hark  !  the  holy  angels 

Through  the  portals  wing. 
And  with  raptured  voices 

Hail  the  ascending  King. 
Now  a  tide  of  glory 

Floods  each  heavenly  sphere ; 
Hell's  abysmal  regions 

Pale  with  gloomy  fear. 


360  Poems  and  Translations 

In  the  central  spaces 

Balanced,  to  her  core 
Earth  is  awed  by  wonders 

Never  seen  before. 
Vanquished  death  is  weeping, 

And,   through  conflict  hard, 
Cheerfully  Christ's  soldiers 

Press  to  their  reward. 

God  the  eternal  Father, 

God  the  only  Son, 
And,  from  both  proceeding. 

Spirit,  Three  in  One, 
Help  us  in  our  conflict 

So  the  cross  to  bear. 
That  Thy  heavenly  glory 

We  at  last  may  share. 


XII. 

Selections  from  the  "Baptistes," 

With  Translations  by  Lionel  S.  Charles,   University  of 
St.  Andrews — (Steele  Prize). 

Bitchanan's  Baptistes,  considered  as  a  stage  play,  is  inferior  to  his  Jephthes. 
It  is  remarkable,  however,  for  the  contrasts  of  character  it  displays  and  the 
prominence  into  which  it  thrusts  forward  the  figure  of  the  prophet.  To  use 
the  words  of  Dr.  Gordon  Mitchell,  "the  play  is  a  voice  in  a  setting  of 
whispers."  To  appreciate  fully  the  extracts  here  given,  the  reader  will  find 
Chapter  XIII.  of  this  volume  valuable,  but  new  light  has  recently  been 
thrown  on  this  drama.  In  his  Defence  in  the  Inquisition  Buchanan  has  stated 
that  when  he  wrote  the  Baptistes,  he  had  Sir  Thomas  More  in  mind.  (See 
Appendix  I.  a.  and  footnotes).  Thus  the  play  is  now  seen  to  be  a  protest 
against  the  tyranny  of  Henry  VIII. 

The  numbering  of  the  Scenes  here  used  is  that  employed  by  Mr.  Alexander 
Gibb  in  his  translation  of  the  Baptistes  (1870). 

I.  Queen  Herodias  incites  Herod  to  slay  John,  because  he  had  reproved  them 

for  their  incestuous  marriage.     (Scene  III. ) 
n.  Herod  desires  John  to  cease  disturbing  the  public  peace,  and  after  John 

vindicates  his  preaching,  the  Chorus  reminds  God  of  what  He  has  done 

for  His  people,  and  calls  on  Him  to  look  on  their  present  evil  condition 

and  rescue  them  from  misery.     (Scene  V. ) 
in.  John,  in  sublime  words,  declares  he  is  ready  to  die,  and  hopes  for  an 

immortal  life  of  blessedness.     Chorus  bids  him  farewell.     [Scene  X.). 

IV.  Chorus  moralises  on  the  wickedness  of  Jerusalem  in  slaying  the  prophets, 

and  anticipates  the  judgments  of  God.     [Scene  XIII.) 

V.  Announcement  of  the  death  of  John.     [Scene  XIV.) 


362  Poems  and  Translations 

Selections  from  the  "Baptistes." 

I. — Queen  Herodias  incites  Herod  to  slaughter  John. 

Tanto  in  tumultu  nihil  agendum  est  aspere, 

Quum  concitatur  mobilis  vulgi  furor; 

Leges,  religio,  auctoritasque  principis 

Contemta,  plebi  est  infimae  ludibrio  ? 

Cave,  lenitatis  falsa  species  avocet 

Tibi  mentem  ab  aequo :  quae  videtur  lenitas, 

Propius  tuenti  summa  erit  crudelitas. 

Dum  parcis  uni  factioso  et  perdito. 

Is  perditum  omnes,  in  caput  quos  hie  tuum 

Armare  satagit.     Finge  fieri,  quod  fore 

Tandem  necesse  est,  concitari  mobile 

Ad  arma  vulgus,  cuncta  passim  lugubri 

Ardere  bello,  vasta  linqui  praedia, 

Urbes  cremari,  virgines  per  vim  rapi, 

Manusque  dubia  conseri  victoria ; 

Quum  frena  legum  ruperit  licentia, 

Damnabis  istam  sero  turn  clementiam. 

Atque  ecce  coram  pestis  et  mali  caput. 

Hie  censor  ille  est.     Hunc  roga,  plura  audies 

(Ni  fallor)  ab  eo,  fama  quam  vulgaverit. 

Nee  miror  esse  sceptra  qui  spernant  tua ; 

Quando  ipse  pravos  lenitate  provocas. 

Translation. 

Listen,  my  king,  and  all  rash  thoughts  refuse. 

In  Salem's  streets  Sedition  cries  aloud. 

And  giant  Treason  fires  the  shrieking  crowd. 

My  king,  let  never  mercy's  painted  show 

Seduce  thy  heart  from  justice.     Mercy  ?     No  ! 

Look  closer,  closer !     'Tis  all  cruelty 

To  spare  one  rebel  in  his  guilt !     And  he 

Arms  thy  poor  lieges'  hands  against  thy  life 

To  their  own  ruin ;   mercy  fires  the  strife. 

Thy  mercy,  king.     So  it  must  be.     Think  well; 

Oh  hearken:     To  your  tents,   0  Israeli 

They  burn  in  wrath ;   they  change  with  bitter  flame 

Cities  to  ashes,  maidenhood  to  shame. 


Baptistes  353 

Ah  cease !   bethink  thee  of  the  evil  day 
When  giant  Discord  breaks  her  bonds  away ; 
When  host  and  host  in  breaking  battle  close, 
Too  late  then  mourn  thy  mercy  and  thy  woes, 
Too  late,  too  late,  too  late ! 

Ah,  he  is  here, 
The  rigid  censor  and  the  judge  severe, 
The  source  of  all  our  bane.     He'll  tell  you  more, 
I  think,  than  rumour  told  your  ears  before. 
'Tis  little  marvel  if  they  mock  the  throne. 
The  king  shows  mercy,  and  the  fault's  his  own. 


II. — The  A'ppeal  of  the  Chorus  to  Heaven. 

O  spatiosi  conditor  orbis, 
Cujus  trepidant  omnia  nutum, 
Coelum  nitidis  ignibus  aptum, 
Tellus  vario  florida  cultu, 
Tumidum  refluis  aestibus  aequor : 
Nonne  ad  nostras  pertulit  aures 
Fama  prioris  conscia  saecli, 
Aevi  splendida  facta  prioris  ? 
Cum  tu,  validae  robore  dextrae, 
Auro  atque  opibus  regna  superba 
Ipsa  exstinxti  a  stirpe  revellens, 
Illorum  ut  nos  agro  insereres, 
Agro,  haud  ense,  aut  jaculis  nostris, 

Aut  consilio  vique  parato. 
Sed  nos  coeli  favor  omnipotens. 

Per  fera  tutos  agmina  duxit. 

Non  tu  Rex  ille  Isacidarum  ? 

Non  tu  gentis  Deus  Hebraeae  ? 

Cujus  ductu  perfida  castra 

Proculcavimus,  hoste  perempto : 

Non  confisi  robore  nostro, 

Sed  duce  et  auspice  te,  praeclaras 

Saepe  retuljmus  patriae  palmas. 

Nunquid  penitus  deseris,  olim, 

Genitor,  populum  tibi  delectum  ? 

Nunquid  fabula  linquimur  hosti  ? 

Spreta  est  pietas  :   religio  jacet : 


354  Poems  and  Translations 

Fraus  purpurea  regnat  in  aula : 
Populus,  tanquam  victima,  sanctus 
Dat  pia  saevae  colla  aecuri : 
Vates  pereunt  ense  tyranni : 
Nostris  gaudent  luctibus  hostes : 
Et  pietatis  sub  praetextu, 
Merifci  poenas  regna  gubernanfc : 
Meritos  regnum  poena  coercet. 
Exsurge,  tuo  populo  f  er  opem : 
Exsurge  parens  optime,  et  hosti 
Da  fce  talem  cernere,  qualem 
Te  viderunt  aequore  patres 
Rubro  Pharios  mergere  currus : 
Qualem  vatis  fatidici  olim 
Te  puer  oculis  vidifc  apertis, 
Dantem  igniferis  frena  quadrigis, 
Totis  flammas  sparger e  campis. 
Te,  caligine  pulsa  erroris 
Humanae  qui  lumina  mentis 
Obruta  caeca  nube  recondit, 
Et  quae  primo  sole  tepescit 
Tellus,  et  quae  mergere  ponto 
Cernit  rutilae  lumina  flammae, 
Unum  agnoscat  cuncta  potentem. 

Translation. 

The  heaven  alight  with  a  golden  flame, 

And  the  earth  where  roses  blow, 

And  the  sea,  with  a  tide  that  none  can  tame, 

Tossing  to  and  fro. 

All  these  bow  down  to  Thy  deathless  name 

Who  madest  all  things  below. 

Have  we  not  heard  (the  tale  is  ours), 

The  tale  of  an  ancient  day, 

How  Thy  hand  smote  down  the  heathen's  powers, 

And  gavest  them  for  a  prey. 

They  were  purple-clad  in  their  golden  towers, 

In  cloth  of  gold  were  they. 

It  was  not  the  shaft  or  the  sword 
That  saved  us  in  that  day ; 


Baptistes  355 

The  strength  and  the  grace  of  the  Lord 
Were  on  us  and  swept  our  way 
Through  the  savage  host  and  the  heathen  horde 
And  the  sword  that  was  raised  to  slay. 

Thou  art  the  King  of  Juda's  race, 

Lord  over  Israel's  seed ; 

On  through  the  guilty  citadel 

We  saw  Thy  right  hand  lead ; 

Ay,  where  Thy  right  hand  pointed  red 

We  saw  the  heathen  bleed. 

It  was  no  strength  of  ours 

That  saved  us  in  that  day ; 

We  leaned  on  our  God,  and  His  powers 

Were  as  a  shield  and  stay. 

And  He  crowned  us  with  power  and  glory 

And  many  a  wreath  of  bay. 

Wilt  Thou  leave  us  a  scorn  to  Thy  f oeman  ? 

For  faith  is  past  away 

In  the  purple  court,  and  no  man 

Hath  care  for  his  God  to-day, 

And  Thy  folk,  fast-bound  at  the  altar, 

Waits  for  the  sword  to  slay. 

And  the  evil  sit  in  high  places. 

Clothed  in  a  holy  show  ; 

There  is  dust  on  Thy  people's  faces, 

There  is  joy  for  the  heathen  foe. 

Oh  hearken,  O  kind  All-father, 

Oh,  rise  and  Thy  folk  set  free! 

As  when  Thou  didst  cast  the  chariots 

Of  Pharaoh  into  the  sea ; 

As  the  son  of  the  prophet  of  old 

Beheld  Thee  with  purged  sight, 

When  the  flames  of  Thy  chariot  rolled 

Through  the  fiery  fields  of  night, 

Give  ear  to  us ;   our  tale  is  told ; 

Bring  forth  Thy  power  to  light. 

And  I  know,  when  the  darkness  closes 
That  severs  our  souls  from  Thee, 


356  Poems  and  Translations 

The  waves  where  the  sun  reposes 
And  the  lands  by  the  eastern  sea 
Shall  know  Thy  power  and  Thy  glory, 
Ruler  eternally ! 


John. 


III. — John  declares  he  is  ready  to  die. 


Non  desero,  sed  potius  ab  eis  deseror. 
Namque,  institutam  ab  initio  mundi  viam, 
In  fata  curro.     Nempe  lege  hac  nascimur, 
Quicunque  lucis  fruimur  almae  munere, 
Conditio  cunctos  una  cohibet,  tendimus 
In  mortem :    eo  nos  singuli  ducunt  dies. 
Mortem  esse  poenam  voluit  improbis  Deus, 
Bonisque  portum     .... 

lam  prope  peractae  liber  e  vitae  freto 
Prospicio  terram  :  de  peregrino  solo 
Domum  revertor,  optimum  primum  patrem 
Visurus :   ilium  nempe  patrem,  qui  solum 
Revinxit  undis,  induit  coelum  solo ; 
Regitque  certas  mobilis  coeli  vices : 
Servator,  auctor,  rector  unus  omnium : 
Cui  cuncta  vivunt  viva  juxta  ac  mortua. 
Ut  flamma  sursum  sponte  volvit  vortices, 
Undae  deorsum  perpeti  lapsu  ruunt, 
Propriumque  pergunt  ire  cuncta  ad  fomitem: 
Jamdudum  anhelat  spiritus  coelo  editus. 

Non,  si  pruinis  obstet  horrens  Caucasus, 

Aer  procellis,  unda  tempestatibus, 

Tractusque  nimiis  invius  caloribus, 

Eo  ire  pergam  ?  non,  tot  ut  videam  duces, 

Reges,  prophetas,  judices  pios,  via 

Rumpenda,  vel  si  mille  mortes  obstruant? 

Ergo  recluso  corporis  de  carcere, 

Eo  evolare  spiritus  liber  cupit. 

Quo  cunctus  ibit  orbis,  serins,  ocius. 

Nam  longa  vita  nil,  opinor,  aliud  est, 

Quam  lenta  duro  servitus  in  carcere. 


Baptistes  357 

O  mors  laboris  una  laxamen  gravis ! 
O  mors  doloris  portus,  et  mali  quies ! 
Notumque  paucis  commodum  mortalibus. 
Formido  pravis,  et  bonis  votum !  tuo 
Sinn  rocepta  naufragum  hoc  corpusculum, 
Et  sempiternae  due  quietis  in  domum, 
Quo  non  sequetur  vis,  dolus,  calumnia. 

Chorus. 
O  te  beatum  hac  pectoris  constantia ! 
O  nos  misellos,  quos  iners  animi  metus, 
Felicitatis  privat  hoc  consortio  ! 
Quando  igitur  ipse  quod  opus  est  facto  tenes. 
Salve  valeque  sempiternum  dicimus. 

Translation  John. 

I  leave  them  not;    they  will  no  longer  stay. 

My  soul  is  going  on  its  ancient  way 

Through  gates  predestined  since  God's  world  began, 

His  law  is  heavy  on  the  soul  of  man. 

For  a  brief  season  in  the  kindly  light 

We  pass,  but  ever  onward  to  the  night. 

Ah,  for  the  base  'tis  penance ;    for  the  saints 

It  heals  the  weary  flesh,  the  soul  that  faints. 

From  seas  storm-stricken,  waters  desolate 

I  yearn  for  land,  for  land  !     I  see  Thy  gate. 

My  father's  house.     My  father — He  hath  given 

The  lucent  azure  of  the  inarching  heaven. 

Around  the  earth  He  clasped  the  ancient  sea. 

And  the  primaeval  stars  keep  memory 

Of  His  commands ;   their  courses  know  Him  still 

Author  of  all,  and  all  obey  His  will. 

All  things  return  where  first  they  saw  the  day. 
As  waters  ever  seek  the  downward  way ; 
As  flames  aspiring  ever  upward  rise. 
The  soul  indignant  claims  her  native  skies. 

Though  Caucasus  itself  should  bar  my  way 

With  icy  horror,  yet  I  would  not  stay. 

Though  storms  should  fill  the  sea  and  storms  the  air, 


358  Poems  and  Translations 

And  wastes  of  tropic  sands,  and  blinding  glare 

Lay  all  between.     On,  onward  to  the  goal! 

Burst  through  a  thousand  deaths,  unvanquished  soul! 

There  are  the  righteous  judges,  kings  and  seers, 

Of  ancient  days ;    there  are  their  warrior  peers 

Who  led  God's  people  in  the  battle-line  I 

Fare  forth  my  soul,  and  wing  thy  way  divine 

Bursting  thy  prison-house !     And  soon  or  late 

All,  all  the  world  must  pass  that  equal  gate. 

What  is  a  body  with  long  life  endued 

Save  a  drear  prison-house  of  servitude  ? 

But  there  is  one  that  holds  the  prison-key, 

O  Death,  fair  Death ;   and  still  we  turn  to  thee. 

'Tis  thine  to  hush  our  pain  with  soft  caress. 

Haven  of  peace !    storm-stricken  in  the  stress 

Of  Life's  sad  ocean,  still  to  thee  we  turn. 

Thy  arms  receive  us,  and  thy  beacons  burn. 

Few  know  thy  kindness — to  the  just  a  vow. 

To  sin  a  curse.     Oh,  give  me  shelter  now ! 

From  this  sad  cave  of  Guile  and  Force  release 

And  guide  me  to  the  eternal  House  of  peace. 

Chorus. 

Oh,  thou  art  happy  in  thy  generous  vow. 

As  we  are  base,  we  who  are  fain  to  bow 

To  craven  fear ;    we  linger  in  distress ; 

We  are  not  worthy  of  thy  happiness. 

Thou  knowest  what  must  be,  and  what  must  cease. 

A  last  farewell !     Oh  pass,  and  pass  in  peace. 


lY.—The  Chorus  on  God's  judgment  of  the  wicked. 

Davidis  regnum,  Solymaeque  turres, 
Et  locupletis  Solomonis  arces, 
Unde  tam  dirus  furor  in  prophet  as  ? 
Sanguinis  justi  sitis  unde  saeva  ? 
Quem  decet  normara  pictatis  esse, 
Unicum  est  vitae  specimen  scelestae. 
Furta,  vis,  caedcs,  dolus  ac  rapinae 
Sunt  tuae  tirocinium  palaestrae. 


Baptistes  369 


Non  sacerdoti  pietas  nefandis 
Fraudibus  suadet  cohibore  dexfcras. 
Cultor  idoli  populus  reliquit 
Omnium  rerum  Dominum  et  parentem, 
Pro  Deo  lignum  colitur  lapisque : 
His  calent  arae  vitulis  et  agnis : 
Et  suae  dextrae  simulacra  adorat 
Artifex :   vitam  sine  lege  truncum 
Poscit,  a  muto  eloquium  precatur : 
Pauperi  dives,  dominus  ministro 
Supplicat :   ritus  pereunt  vetusti. 
Te  prophetarum  cruor  innocentum 
Judicis  magni  rapit  ad  tribunal : 
Pauperes  clamant,  viduaeque  coelum 
Questibus  implant. 
Ergo  te  justae  manet  ultionis 
Poena  non  mendax,  nisi  fallor  augur. 
Namque,  qui  fast  us  premit  insolentes 
Arbiter'  coeli,  maris  atque  terrae, 
Spectat  ex  alto,  lacrymasque  plebis 
Et  preces  tristes  meminit,  manuque 
Vindice  infandi  sceleris  propinquas 
Exiget  poenas  :    quibus  intumescis, 
Insolens  victor  tibi  vertet  arces : 
Barbarus  miles  tua  possidebit 
Praedia :   externo  domino  ref undet 
Vinitor  fructus  tuus :  alta  qua  nunc 
Surgit  in  coelum  Solomontis  aedes, 
Exterus  messem  faciet  colonus. 
Ergo  dum  praebet  tibi  poenitendi 
Numinis  favor  spatium,  relictis 
Turpiter  vitae  vitiis  peractae, 
Exteri  ritus  simulacra  pelle. 

Teanslation  Chorus. 

City  of  David's  righteousness ! 

City  of  holy  hands  ! 

Thou  art  a  light  of  scarlet  sin 

To  all  the  sinful  lands, 

And  blood  and  theft  and  guile  are  all 

Thy  spirit  understands. 


362  Poems  and  Translations 

Else  many  a  saint  were  pitied  in  his  death 
When  cross,  or  sea,  or  flame  consumed  his  breath. 
Warrior  of  truth,  Warrior  of  God  he  fell 
Guarding  the  holy  laws  of  Israel. 
Fair  speech  attend  him,  and  fair  auspices 
Attend  him.     God,  make  Thou  our  end  like  his ! 

Chorus. 

'Tis  true,  'tis  true !     But  all  is  nought  to  us, 

We  are  but  reeds,  shaken  of  perilous 

Sad  winds ;   we  fly,  we  fly  and  meet  our  death. 

If  flame  is  kind,  wild  ocean  stops  our  breath. 

Or  winds  of  pestilence  destroy,  in  vain 

Snatched  from  the  menace  of  the  stormy  main. 

Unscathed  we  ride  from  the  dim  battlefield. 

Unscathed — till  to  disease  the  victors  yield. 

God  deigns  the  fatal  summons  to  defer 

"  For  certain  months  and  days,"  but  will  not  spare. 

In  perilous  breath  and  daily  misery 

We  pay  grim  Death  a  bitter  usury. 

His  chain  is  heavy  on  the  soul  of  man ; 

Our  sorrow's  measure  is  our  being's  span. 

Ah !    think  not  that  we  fear  to  wear  his  chain ; 

So  we  but  live,  we  count  our  thraldom  gain. 


XIII. 

Paraphrase  of  the  Psalms  of  David. 

The  Psalmorum  Davidis  Paraphraais  Poetica  is  the  work  for  which  Buchanan 
earned  the  greatest  distinction  in  his  life-time.  This  was  a  common  exercise 
of  the  Humanists,  but  there  is  the  authority  of  Le  Clerc,  Pere  Bourbon, 
Cowley,  Arthur  Johnston,  and  Henri  Estienne,  for  saying  that  Buchanan's 
versions  were  superior  to  all.  "  All  France,  Italy,  and  Germany  have  since 
subscribed  to  the  same  opinion,"  says  Maittaire.^  "  Buchanan  seems  to  have 
consulted  the  Hebrew  text  with  the  interpretation  of  his  friend  Vatablus 
and  the  Commentators,  and  he  probably  used  these  as  subsidiary  to  the 
Vulgate,  the  Septuagint,  and  the  modern  translation."^  It  is,  nevertheless, 
true  that  his  version  is  free,  and,  as  is  shown  in  the  following  pages,  uses 
varieties  of  metre  mostly  unknown  in  Hebrew.  Though  Buchanan  has  set 
himself  to  build  a  classical  temple  in  honour  of  the  true  God,  and  though  his 
work,  with  "its  European  charm  of  form,"  at  times  recalls  too  closely  its 
classical  models,  he  has  preserved  something  of  the  "  Syrian  depth  of  feeling." 
The  whole  of  the  work  is  unequal  in  parts,  but  there  are  at  times  exquisite 
pieces  of  composition.  The  best  are  here  given,  and  comparison  made  with 
others. 

I.  The  Paraphrase  of  Psalm  CXXXVII.  is  undoubtedly  the  finest  part  of  the 

whole  work.  In  spite  of  the  fact  that  the  true  spirit  of  Hebrew  poetry 
is  not  felt,  ' '  there  is  thorough  power,  yet  perfect  ease  ;  a  quiet  finished 
classical  tone  throughout,  but  no  mosaic,  no  centroism."^  The  para- 
phrase by  Lord  Grenville  will  enable  the  reader  to  see  the  difl:erence 
between  a  man  of  genius  writing  in  Latin  and  "  an  accomplished  modern 
gentleman  who  can  write  Latin  verses. " 

II.  Psalm   CXXI.  as  paraphrased  by  Buchanan  and   M.   Antonio   Flaminio 

provides  the  distinction  between  the  learned  Latinist  who  could  rise  into 
a  higher  atmosphere,  and  the  poet  whose  ability  for  sustained  thought 
had  been  weakened.  Flaminio — a  great  Latin  poet  of  the  modern 
school — was  above  all  "a  man  of  virtue  and  simple  tastes,  who  ardently 
desired  a  return  to  purer  ideals  on  the  part  of  the  Church."^  In  other 
words  his  main  purpose  is  to  build  up  piety  and  to  mould  the  thought  of 

1  Quoted  by  Hallam,  Literature  of  the  Middle  Ages,  vol.  ii.  p.  147,  and 
by  Hume  Brown,  Oeorge  Buchanan,  Humanist  and  Reformer,  p.  146. 

2  NcyHh  British  Review,  March  1867. 
'  North  British  Review,  March  1867. 

*  Hume  Brown,  Oeorge  Buchanan,  Humanist  and  Reformer,  p.  142. 


364  Poems  and  Translations 

the  young, — his  appeal  beinj;  wholly  to  the  heart  of  man.  He  would 
insert  nothing  in  his  translations  of  which  David  would  disapprove,  and 
yet  he  sought  to  add  grace  to  the  beauty  of  his  verse  ; 

"...   virgiiii  pulcherrimae 
Quale  docus  addunt  arte  purpureae  rosae, 
Violaeque  flavis  orinibus  eiroumdatae. " 

("even  as  rich-hued  roses  and  violets,  garlanding  her  golden  locks,  add 
grace  to  some  beautiful  maiden").'  Buchanan,  on  the  other  hand,  is  not 
merely  a  translator,  but  has  completed  the  thought  where  in  the  original 
there  were  merely  a  "  series  of  disjointed  utterances."  Buchanan  is  here 
the  thinker  as  well  as  the  poet,  Flaminio  is  the  man  of  feeling  whose 
purity  of  language,  not  superior  to  Buchanan's,  is  his  especial  reoom- 
naendation. 
III.  The  paraphrase  of  Psalm  CIV.  is  another  of  the  best  of  Buchanan's 
compositions.  One  of  his  critics,  Dr.  Eglisham,  "  had  the  vanity  to 
suppose  himself  capable  of  executing  a  paraphrase  superior  to  that  of  his 
illustrious  countryman,  and  was  even  so  infatuated  as  to  exhibit  a  version 
of  Psalm  CIV.  in  contrast  with  his."  ^  We  give  Eglisham's  version  here, 
that  all  Latinists  may  judge  for  themselves.  Both  Dr.  Barclay  and  Dr. 
Johnston  exposed  the  pxierility  of  Eglisham's  paraphrase,  and  severely 
attacked  him,  the  latter  in  two  severely  satirical  pieces. 

VI.  The  Paraphrase  of  Psalm  XXVII.  shows  us  Buchanan's  favourite  metre, 
— one  frequently  used  by  Horace.  Compared  with  Buchanan's  version 
is  that  of  his  great  rival  of  after  years — Dr.  Johnston,  of  which  much  has 
already  been  said  in  these  pages. 

The  translations  of  Buchanan's  Paraphrasis  into  English  verse,  which 
are  here  given,  are  by  John  Eadie,  who  is  described  as  a  preacher  of  the 
Gospel,  and  who  probably  secured  his  M.  A.  degree  at  Glasgow  in  1820.  While 
these  translations  are  not  at  all  of  great  merit,  they  prove  that  even  in  the 
early  part  of  the  last  century,  Buchanan's  work  was  well  known.  In  the 
following  pages  are  given  notes  and  explanations  by  Chytraeus  and  Yule. 
Nathan  Chytraeus  has  served  to  spread  Buchanan's  fame.  He  was  born  in 
1.543,  and  was  rector  of  the  gymnasium  at  Bremen,  and  introduced  Buchanan's 
Paraphrasis  into  the  (lerman  schools.  In  Chytraeus'  edition,  the  translations 
are  set  to  music  composed  by  Statius  Olthovius.  Yule,  latinised  Julius,  is 
said  to  have  been  a  graduate  of  St.  Andrews,  and,  as  has  already  been 
mentioned  in  these  pages,  was  at  one  time  rector  of  Stirling  High  School. 
It  is  stated  that  Buchanan  had  given  some  explanations  of  his  translations  of 
the  Psalms  to  his  nephew,  Thomas  Buchanan.  These  were  at  the  time  noted, 
and  these  notes  were  given  by  the  son  of  Thomas  Buchanan  to  Yule,  who 
was  himself  a  poet.  These  notes  are  given  because  they  lend  an  additional 
interest  to  the  following  specimens  of  George  Buchanan's  work,  for  in  the 
words  of  John  Keble  ( Pnmlect.  Acad.  I.  76), 

"Qualia  sunt  ilia  sanctissimi  Vatis  vivide  a  Buchanano  expressa." 

1  Hume  Brown,  Ocori/c  Hiiulunimi,  Humanist  and  Htformer,  p.  143. 
"  Irving,  Memoirs,  2nd  edit.,  p.  113. 


Psalm  CXXXVIl.  365 

L— Psalm  CXXXVIL 

(Paraphrase  by  George  Buchanan.) 

Dum  procTiI  a  patria  moesti  Babylonis  in  oris, 

Fluminis  ad  liquidas  forte  sedemus  aquas; 
Ilia  animum  subiit  species  miseranda  Sionis, 

Et  nunquam  patrii  tecta  videnda  soli. 
Flevimus,  et  gemitus  luctantia  verba  repressit ; 

Inque  sinus  liquidae  decidit  imber  aquae. 
Muta  super  virides  pendebant  nablia  ramos, 

Et  salices  tacitas  sustinuere  lyras. 
Ecce  ferox  dominus  Solymae  populator  opimae 

Exigit  in  mediis  carmina  laeta  malis  ; 
Qui  patriam  exilio  nobis  mutavit  acerbo, 

Nos  jubet  ad  patrios  verba  referre  modes, 
Quale  canebamus,  steterat  dum  celsa  Sionis 

Regia,  finitimis  invidiosa  locis. 
Siccine  divinos  Babylon  irrideat  hymnos  ? 

Audiat  et  sanctos  terra  profana  modos  ? 
O  Solymae,  O  adyta,  et  sacri  penetralia  templi, 

Ullane  vos  animo  deleat  bora  meo  ? 
Comprecor,  ante  meae  capiant  me  oblivia  dextrae, 

Nee  memor  argutae  sit  mea  dextra  lyrae  : 
Os  mihi  destituat  vox,  arescente  palato, 

Haereat  ad  fauces  aspera  lingua  meas : 
Prima  mihi  vestrae  nisi  sint  praeconia  laudis; 

Hinc  nisi  laetitiae  surgat  origo  meae. 
At  tu  (quae  nostrae  insultavit  laeta  rapinae) 

Gentis  Idumaeae  tu  memor  esto,  pater. 
Diripite,  ex  imis  evertite  fundamentis,^ 

Aequaque  (clamabant)  reddite  tecta  solo. 
Tu  quoque  crudeles  Babylon  dabis  impia  poenas : 

Et  rerum  instabiles  experiere  vices. 
Felix  qui  nostris  accedet  cladibus  ultor, 

Reddet  ad  exemplum  qui  tibi  damna  tuum. 
Felix  qui  tenero  consperget  saxa  cerebro, 

Eripiens  gremio  pignora  car  a  tuo. 

^  Ruddiman  draws  attention  to  this  line. 


366  Poems  and  Translations 

Translation 

(hy  John  Eadie,  Glatgow,  1836). 

While  banished  from  our  native  land, 

To  Bab'lon's  hostile  shore, 
We  by  the  flowing  river  sit. 

And  all  our  woes  deplore ; 

Sion's  lost  form,  to  be  bewailed. 

Appears  before  our  eyes. 
Our  native  lands  ne'er  to  be  seen, 

In  our  grieved  minds  arise. 

We  wept,  and  groans  our  words  suppressed. 

Tears  o'er  our  bosoms  rain. 
Our  harps  now  dumb  the  branches  green 

And  leafy  twigs  sustain. 

Our  lyres  on  boughs  of  willow  trees 

Aside  from  us  were  hung, 
And  mourning  much  we  left  them  there. 

All  silent  and  unstrung. 

Behold,  our  Lord,  the  spoiler  fierce 

Of  Solyma's  great  power. 
Commands  us  to  sing  joyful  songs. 

Where  griefs  our  souls  devour. 

And  he  who  drove  us  from  the  land 

To  us  so  long  endeared. 
Where  we  were  born  and  lived  in  joy 

While  us  our  parents  reared. 

And  from  it  far  us  captive  led. 

To  feel  the  exile's  pains. 
Requires  us  now  to  suit  our  songs 

To  our  sweet  native  strains. 

Such  as  we  sung  when  Sion  stood 

In  lofty  regal  state, 
And  all  the  nations  round  admired 

Our  happiness  so  great. 

Should  Babylon  deride  the  hymns 

To  God  Almighty  sung? 
Should  in  a  heathen  land  profane 

Such  sacred  sounds  be  rung  ? 


Psalm  CXXXVII.  367 

O  Solyma!    O  temple's  shrines, 

Of  the  most  holy  place ! 
Shall  any  length  of  fleeting  time 

You  from  my  mind  efface? 

May  my  right  hand  forget  to  raise 

The  harp's  melodious  sound, 
May  my  voice  cleave  to  my  mouth's  roof, 

May  my  parched  tongue  be  bound, 

If  I  am  not  the  herald  first 

Of  your  high-sounding  praise. 
If  you  are  not  the  origin 

Of  all  my  joyful  lays; 

But  thou,  our  Father,  bear  in  mind 

The  Idumean  race, 
Who  at  the  desolation  scoffed 

Of  our  dear  native  place. 

The  wall's  foundations  raze,  they  said, 

Lay  level  with  the  ground 
The  houses  all,  and  spoil,  they  cried. 

To  the  land's  utmost  bound. 

Thou,  likewise,  Babylon,  shalt  feel 

A  sad  reverse  of  state. 
Punished  because  thou  mad'st  us  groan 

'Neath  misery's  galling  weight. 

Happy  he'll  be  who  shall  advance 

Th'  avenger  of  our  wrong. 
Who,  just  as  thou  hast  done  to  us. 

Shall  make  thee  suffer  long. 

Happy  he'll  be  who'll  tear  by  force 

From  breasts  of  mothers  dear 
The  children  that  in  'midst  of  thee 

They  tenderly  uprear. 

And  sprinkle  all  their  scattered  brains 

Dashed  on  the  sharp  rough  stone. 
That  thus  thou  may'st  for  all  thy  crimes. 

To  us  oppressed,  atone. 


368  Poems  and  Translations 

Paraphrase  (I. -VI.) 

(By  Lord  Grenville,  18^.6.) 

Euphratis  ripae  acclines,  ubi,  limite  longo 

Porrecta,  Assyriae  tristia  culta  patent, 
Amissam  memoros  patriam,  sanctumque  Siona 

Flevimus,  et  summi  diruta  templa  Dei. 
At  qua  moesta  salix  invisam  offuderat  umbram, 

Pendebant  tacitae,  pristina  cura,  lyrae. 
Saepe  illic  Solymae  eversae  captiva  propago 

Impia  victoris  probra  minasque  tulit : 
Saepe  illic,  pompas  inter  ritusque  nefandoa, 

Ingemuit,  patrios  jussa  referre  modos. 
Ergone  solennes  virgo  Solymaea  choreas 

Captiva  et  patriis  finibus  exul  agat  ? 
Ergo  et  nunc  poterit,  Babylonis  moenia  propter, 

Sacra  Davideae  tangere  fila  lyrae. 
Qua  Siloa,  altusque  Hermon,  Libanusque  sonabant, 

Praesentique  Patris  numine  plena  Salem  ? 
Cara  Salem,  quascunque  ferar  vagus  exul  in  oras, 

Ecquando  possim  non  memor  esse  tui  ? 
At  mihi  defixa  obmutescat  lingua  palato, 

At  citharam,  et  solitum  dextra  recuset  opus, 
Si  mentem  non  una  meam  tua  torquet  imago, 

Una  Salem,  luctus  laetitiaeque  comes. 

II.— Psalm  CXXI. 

(Paraphrase   by   George  Buchanan.) 

Dum  ferox  armis  inimicus  instat, 

Ad  montes  vaga  lumina 
Proximos  circumfero,  si  quid  illinc 

Forte  appareat  auxili. 
At  mihi  coeli  Dominus  solique 

Certam  solus  opem  feret. 
Ille  (quid  vano  trepidans  tumultu 

Cor  pulsaa  mihi  pectora?) 
Ille  sanctorum  (mihi  erode)  custos 

Noctes  excubat  et  dies : 


Psalm  CXXI.  369 

Victa  nee  blandi  illecebris  soporis 

Unquam  lumina  dimovet : 
Leniter  passis  tibi  semper  alis 

Umbrae  more  supervolat ; 
Ne  cutem  solis  violentioris 

Urant  spicula  de  die, 
Nocte  ne  lunae  nebulosioris 

Artus  degravet  halitus.' 
Seu  domi  clausus  lateas,   latentem 

Clausis  servat  in  aedibus  : 
Seu   foris  pacis  obeas  amicae,^ 

"Seu  belli  fera  munera, 
Sospitem  e  cunctis  Dominus  periclis 

Semper  te  bonus  eruet. 

Translation 

(by  John  Eadie,  Glasgow,  183GJ. 

While  th'  en'my  fierce  threatens  with  arms. 

Around  mine  eyes  I  throw, 
On  mountains  near,  if  thence  perhaps, 

Aid  its  approach  should  show. 

The  Lord  of  heaven  and  earth  alone 

Assistance  sure  will  grant. 
He,  (why  heart  beating  in  my  breast, 

Dost  thou  with  vain  fear  pant  ?) 

He,  be  assured,  the  watchful  guard 

Of  saints  his  chief  delight. 
Beholds  them  with  unsleeping  eye, 

Both  in  the  day  and  night. 

He  ia  awake,  and  them  he  loves 

In  view  will  ever  keep : 
For  his  all-seeing  eye  ne'er  yields 

To  slumb'ring  or  to  sleep. 

'  Yule  paraphrases  this  line  as  "should  make  the  body  sluggish  or  weak." 
'  This  may  be  paraphrased,  according  to  Yule,  "  or  beyond   the   house 
thou  performest  duties  of  pleasant  tranquillity." 
A   1 


370  Poems  and  Translations. 

O'er  thee,  my  soul,  his  shading  wings 

He  ever  gentle  lays  : 
Lest  that  by  day  thou  should'st  be  hurt. 

By  the  sun's  scorching  rays ; 

Lest  the  cool  moon  shining  through  clouds. 
Thy  wearied  limbs  should  chill, 

When  shifting  vapours,  during  night, 
The  air  with  coldness  fill. 

Whether  thou  art  retired  at  home, 

Enjoying  private  peace, 
He'll  cause  that  thou  in  safety  may'st 

Obtain  thy  secret  ease  ; 

Or  if  thou  should'st,  in  tranquil  state. 

Perform  of  civil  life 
The  duties  quiet,  or  dang'rous  deeds. 

Of  horrid  war  and  strife. 

The  bounteous  Lord  will  thee  preserve. 

From  dangers  all  secure ; 
Salvation  will  begin  on  earth 

Endless  in  heaven  t'  endure. 


Paraphrase 


(hy  M.  Antonius  Flaminius,  1669). 

Periculis  in  maximis  vates  docet, 
Esse  excieudam  opem  Dei. 

Dum  me  cruentus  hostis  urget,  lumina 

Montes  ad  altos  sustuli, 
Unde  ille  rerum  praepotens  pater  omnium, 

Terrae,  polique  conditor, 
Frustratus  hostem  barbarum,  mittet  mihi 

Opem  benigno  numine. 
Nunquam  ille  saevis  impiorum  incursibus 

Tuam  ainet  constantiam 
Labare  victam :    dormiet  nunquam  tuae 

Salutis  ille  neligens : 
Qui  civitati  praesidet  sanctissimae, 

Nunquam  profecto  dormiet 
Haerebit  ille  semper  ad  de.xtrum  latus 

Fidissimus  comestuum  : 


Psalm  CIV.  371 

Umbraculique  tecum  amabilis  vice 

Fungetur  optimus  pater, 
Ne  fervidus  te  tangat  aut  Sol,  aut  gravi 

Luna  insalubris  lumine. 
Quodcunque  ages,  ubicunque  eris,  domi,  foris 

In  urbe,  in  agro,  tecum  erit 
Semper  beatus  caelitum  rex,  et  pater, 

Fortunet  ut  tibi  omnia  : 
Suasque  ducet  tandem  ad  demos,  ubi 

Aeterna  vives  secula. 

in. — Psalm  CIV.  (xiii.-xxvti.). 

(Paraphrase   hy   George  Buchanan.) 

Tu  pater  aerios  montes,  camposque  jacentes 
Nectare  coelesti  saturas,  foecundaque  rerum 
Semina  vitales  in  luminis  elicis  oras.^ 
Unde  pecus  carpat  viridis  nova  pabula  foeni : 
Unde  olus  humanos  geniale  assurgat  in  usus : 
Quaeque  novent  fessas  cerealia  munera^  vires, 
Quaeque  hilarent  mentes  jucundi  pocula  vini, 
Quique  hilaret  vultus^  succus  viridantis  olivi. 
Nee  minus  arboribus  succi  genitabilis*  humor 
Sufficitur :   cedro  Libanum  frondente  coronas, 
Alitibus^  nidos :  abies  tibi  consita  surgit, 
Nutrit  ubi  implumes  peregrina  ciconia  foetus. 

'  In  some  editions  auras  is  given  instead  of  oras. 

^  "Cerealia  munera  was  a  poetical  phrase  for  pro  frugilma." — Chytraeus. 
The  Goddess  Ceres  has  been  referred  to  by  nearly  all  poets,  but  of  her  David 
could  not  have  known. 

^  In  the  1620  London  edition  of  the  Paraphrasis  Psalmonim,  edited  by 
Yule,  milium  is  given. 

■*  Chytraeus  points  out  that  this  word  was  used  by  Varro  and  Lucretius. 
The  latter  certainly  uses  it  for  genitalis, — Et  reserata  viget  genitabilis  aura 
Favoni  (I.  11).  But  Varro  is  only  quoting  Lucilius  when  he  uses  the  word. 
Chytraeus  seems  to  attribute  to  Virgil  the  line  of  Lucretius. 

''  Chytraeus  notes  that  in  the  interpretations  of  the  ancients  some  birds 
were  called  oscines,  and  others  alites  or  praepetes.  The  former  were  con- 
sidered to  denote  forebodings  of  some  event  by  their  voice  and  song,  the 
latter  by  their  flight.  This  note  of  Chytraeus  seems  to  be  borrowed  from 
Servius  who,  however,  distinguishes  only  between  oscines  and  praepetes. 
Cp.  Virgil  (Aen.  III.  361) — Qui  volucrum  linguas,  qui  praepetis  omina  pennae. 


372  Poems  and  Translations 

Tu  timidis  montes  damis ;    cava  saxa  dedisti, 
Tutus  ut  abstrusis  habitaret  echinus'  in  antris. 

Tu  lunae  incertos  vultus  per  tempora  certa 
Circumagis :   puroque  accensum  lumine  solem 
Ducis  ad  occiduas  constanti  tramite  metas : 
Inde  superfusis  cuncta  involventibus  umbris, 
Per  tacitas  spargis  nocturna  silentia  terras. 
Turn  fera  prorepit  latebris,  silvisque  relictis. 
Praedator  vacuis  errare  leunculus  arvis 
Audet,  et  e  coelo  mugitu  pabula  rauco 
Te  patrem  exposcit :   dein  rursus  sole  renato, 
Abditur  occultis  praedatrix  turba  cavernis : 
Inque  vicem  subeunt  hominumque  boumque  labores, 
Donee  sera  rubens  accendat  lumina  vesper. 

Sic,  pater  in  cunctos  didis^  te  commodus^  usus. 
Nee  tantum  tellus,  genitor,  tua  munera  sentit, 
Tam  variis  f oecunda  bonis :   sed  et  aequora  ponti 
Fluctibus  immensas  circumflectentia  terras, 
Tam  laxo  spatiosa  sinu :  tot  millia  gentis. 
Squamigerae  tremula  per  stagna  liquentia  cauda 
Exsultant :  tot  monstra  ingentia  et  horrida  visu 
Velif eras  circumnant  puppes :  grandia  cete 
Effingunt  moUes  vitreo  sub  marmore''  lusus. 
Atque  adeo  quae  terra  aivis,  quae  fluctibus  aequor 
Educat,  a  te  uno  pendent,  pater  optime,  teque 
Quaeque  suo  proprium  poscunt  in  tempore  victum. 

TnANSLATION 

(hy  John  Eadie,  Glasgow,  1836). 

They're  sated  with  provision  meet. 
And  quench  their  thirst  with  waters  sweet. 
The  river  sweeps  with  wand'ring  waves. 
The  woods  and  devious  rocks  it  laves, 

'  There  were,  according  to  Chytraeus,  two  kinds.  Some  had  a  anout,  as 
a  hog,  others  were  of  the  dog-tribe. 

'  Didere  is  explained  by  Chytraeus  as  a  poetical  usage  for  distribtiere  or 
the  digerere  of  Lucretius  ;  also  used  by  Horace.     It  is  ante-classical. 

'  Some  editions  have  providim  for  commodm. 

*  Chytraeus  calls  this  a  Virgilian  usage  for  mari,  and  "quotes"  from 
II.  Georg., — Injklnm  remix  impdivre  marmor.  Virgil  certainly  uses  it  in 
Aenoid  {VII.  28  and  718,  X.  218),  but  llio  phrase  vuirmor  infidum  is  found  in 
Siliua,  XIV.  464. 


Psalm  CIV.  373 

Where  the  wild  ass  all  lonely  dwells, 
And  drinks  it  as  it  freshly  swells. 
Along  its  banks  the  trees  arise, 
With  lofty  branches  to  the  skies. 

Where  fowls  that  skim  along  the  air, 
To  build  their  nests  in  flocks  repair. 
And  soothe,  with  warbling  plaintive  note. 
The  solitary  wilds  remote. 

Thou,  Father,  pourest  o'er  the  plains 
And  mountains  high,  ethereal  rains. 
Whence  seeds  fertility  obtain, 
And  soon  with  life  cover  the  plain. 

The  growing  tribes  are  all  alive, 
Whence  moving  creatures  food  derive. 
The  herbage  fresh  covers  the  ground. 
And  cattle  feed  the  fields  around. 

The  genial  plants,  for  human  use. 
Supply  mankind  with  food  profuse. 
Abundant  bread  man  now  obtains. 
That  long  in  health  his  frame  maintains. 

The  gen'rous  wines  his  mind  excite, 
And  cheer  the  heart  with  true  delight. 
Thus  he's  refreshed  from  varied  toil, 
And  his  face  shines  with  perfumed  oil. 

A  balmy  juice  pervades  the  trees, 
Growing  by  which  their  trunks  increase. 
Their  leafy  boughs  spread  far  and  wide. 
And  they  from  age  to  age  abide. 

The  cedar  Lebanon  invests, 

Among  whose  leaves  birds  build  their  nests. 

Ash  trees,  the  planting  of  the  Lord, 

To  young  of  storks  shelter  afford. 

Their  parents  them  with  food  supply. 
Till  wings  enable  them  to  fly. 
On  tim'rous  deer  thou  has  bestowed 
The  mountains  for  a  safe  abode. 


374  Poems  and  Translations 

Thou  mak'st  'mong  rocks  dark  hollow  caves. 
The  urchin  there  itself  long  saves. 
The  moon  thou  wheelest  in  her  range 
Around  the  earth,  with  reg'lar  change. 

The  sun  thou  clothest  with  pure  light. 
With  which  he  shines,  till  coming  night 
Succeed  the  day,  in  reg'lar  turn, 
Lest  constant  heat  should  nature  burn. 

Then  all  her  works  thou  cover'st  round 
With  shades  and  silence  most  profound. 
The  wild  beasts  then  their  dens  forsake. 
And  rush  abroad  their  prey  to  take. 

The  lion  young  then  leaves  the  wood, 
And  roams  the  fields  to  seize  his  food. 
He  sends  to  heaven  his  hollow  roar, 
That,  Father,  thee  he  may  implore. 

That  nourishment  thou  may'st  provide. 
By  which  he  may  in  life  abide. 
The  rising  sun  relumes  the  sky, 
And  beasts  of  prey  to  coverts  fly. 

Paraphbase 

(by  George  Eglisham,  1618). 

Ambrosio  montes  irrorant  astra  liquore, 
Muneribus  satiata  tuis,  pecorique  virisque 
Aptas  obsequiis,  alimentis  dulcibus  aptas. 
Promit  humus  teneris  gemmantes  floribus  herbas, 
Pampineos  animis  nectentes  gaudia  succos, 
Et  baccas  oleae  fragrantis  ut  ora  serenent, 
Et  cererem  valido  firmantem  corda  vigor e. 
Arboreos  foetus,  tineis  impervia  cedri 
Robora  tu  saturas,  Libani  quae  consita  celso 
Vertice,  progeniem  volucrum  nidosque  tuentur. 
Nee  minus  est  felix  abies,  hac  vimine  texta 
Pendula  castra  no  vat  clangente  cicoria  rostro. 
At  lepori  silices,  pavidis  juga  senta  recessum 
Concilias  damis :   constants  tomporis  ortu 
Inconstans  lunare  decus  runovare  figuras. 


Psalm  XXVII.  376 

Occiduoque  jubes  pelago  decumbere  solem. 
Tecta  soporiferos  picea  caligine  vultus 
Nubila  diffundis  tacitam  ducentia  noctem. 
Proruit  interea  speluncis  acre  ferarum 
Agmen,  et  auxilium  coeleste  leunculus  escam 
In  praedam  exorans,  rugitibus  aethera  pulsat. 
Sole  recens  orto  latebrosis  invia  dumis 
Antra  subit :   remeant  alacres  ad  plaustra  coloni. 
Donee  purpureus  det  sera  crepuscula  vesper. 
Sancte  opifex !    quanto  moliris  cuncta  decore, 
Consilioque  struis  !    Moles  terrena  tuarum 
Dives  opum  exsultat ;    late  circumsonat  ingens 
Oceanus ;   sen  parva  lubet,  seu  magna  ciere 
Corpora  squamigerum,  vitrea  complectitur  alvo 
Inniimeras  pinna  fluitantes  remige  turbas. 
Pandentes  levibus  naves  cita  carbasa  ventis, 
Marmoreoque  sinis  balaenas  gurgite  passim 
Carpere  jucundos  placido  molimine  saltus. 
In  te,  summe  Parens !    haec  inclinata  recumbunt 
Omnia,  temporibus  victum  poscentia  certis. 

IV.— Psalm  XXVII.  (ix.-xiv.). 

(Paraphrase  hy  George  Buchanan.) 

Ne  conde  vultus  lumen  a  me  amabilis, 

Neu  me  in  tenebris  desere. 
Servum  per  iram  ne  sine  opprimi  tuum : 

Vitamque,  quam  debet  tibi, 
Tuere  ab  hoste,  et  e  periclis  eripe, 

O  spes  salutis  unica. 
Me  cari  amici,  me  propinqiii,  me  pater. 

Me  blanda  mater  liquerat : 
At  non  reliquit,  qui  pios  in  asperis 

Non  deserit  rebus,  Deus. 
Parens  benigne,  me  vias  doce  tuas, 

Rectaque  deduc  semita : 
Ne  vis  metusque  ab  hoste  me  deterritum 

De  calle  recti  detrabat. 
Ne  me  impiorum  obnoxium  libidini 

Relinque.     Testes  impii 


376  Poems  and  Translations 

Fingunt  maligne  falsa  de  me  crimina, 

Armantque  se  mendaciis. 
Mens  victa  tantis  iam  fatisceret'  malis, 

Ne  spes  foveret  me  tuae 
Benignitafcis,  post  labores  anxios 

Mox  afPuturum  gaudium. 
Vivusque  vivos  inter  ipse  commoda 

Vitae  beatae  praestolor. 
In  rebus  ergo  turbidis  ne  concide, 

Sed  f  ortis  usque  sustine  :  '^ 
Te  roborabit  Dominus,  et  cor  fulciet ; 

Tu  f ortis  usque  sustine. 

Teanslation 

(hij  John  Eadie,  1836). 

My  dearest  friends  had  fled  from  me. 

Relations  had  all  gone, 
My  father  had  forsaken  me, 

And  I  was  left  alone. 

My  loving  mother  had  me  left ! 

But  God  yet  left  not  me : 
For  he  the  pious  ne'er  forsakes. 

But  them  from  ill  sets  free. 

Father  benign,  teach  me  thy  ways, 

Lead  me  in  righteous  path. 
From  it  let  foes  deter  me  not. 

Nor  even  the  fear  of  death. 

The  wicked  falsely  me  accuse. 

With  cruelty  and  hate. 
And  crimes  untrue  against  me,  they 

Audaciously  relate. 

1  ChytraeuB  considers  that  falisco  may  have  the  sense  of  perior  as  in 
Virgil — Accipiunt  inimicwni  inibrem  rimisqiu:  fiUiicvnt ;  or  it  may  signify  what 
is  deficient  or  weak,  as  in  Lucretius — Animae  natwra  faiiscil  Ftssa  atvo.  In 
the  first  place  Ghytracus  seems  wrong,  because  J'alhfl  cannot  mean  what 
perior  may  signify.  Then  the  quotation  from  Lucretius  is  incorrectly  given. 
Faliecit  should  be  fatisci,  Luorotius,  III.  458.  It  is  a  deponent  verb,  and  in 
Lucretius,  V.  308,  its  other  meaning  i-s  given. 

-  Yule  paraphrased  these  two  lines  as  meaning  "  While  therefore  troubles 
prevail,  do  not  lose  courage." 


Psalm  XXVII.  877 

Long  ore  now  my  heart  had  failed, 

By  such  dire  ills   enclosed, 
Unless  thy  goodness  unto  me 

Had  future  joys  disclosed. 

Yet  living,  'mong  the  living,  I 

A  happy  life  expect, 
Then  bear  your  ills  and  let  not  them 

Your  troubled  hearts  deject. 

Attend   unto  my  suppliant  voice. 

And  me  oppressed  relieve. 
By  heavenly  favour,  may  I   vexed 

Deliverance  receive. 

My  longing  soul  pants  after  thee, 

I  look  with  earnest  face, 
That  I  thy  count'nance  may  behold, 

And  may  obtain  thy  grace. 

Of  thy  bright  face  to  be  desired. 

Hide  not  the  saving  light. 
Leave  me  not  to  be  overwhelmed. 

In  darkness  of  the  night. 

Let  not  thy  servant  be  oppressed 

By  thy  wrath's  grievous  load. 
Preserve  the  life  from  enemies 

Thou  hast  on  me  bestowed. 

O  thou,  who  art  the  only  hope 

Of   my  salvation  sure. 
Deliver  me  from  dangers,   which 

So  often  I  endure. 

The  Lord  to  thee  will  give  great  strength, 

And  will  support  thy  heart  : 
Then  patient  bear  affliction's  load, 

And  duteous  act  thy  part. 


378  Poems  and  Translations 

Paraphease 

(by  Arthur  Johnston,  U.I).,  1637). 

Lumina  deflecfcens  famulum  ne  respue,  tristem 

Ne  fuge,  qui  vifcae  spes  mihi  semper  eras. 
Me  licet  horreret  pater  et  patris  aemula  mater, 

Dextra  tamen,  spero,  me  tua  toilet  humo. 
Tu,  quod  iter  subeam,  monstra;   facilemque  clienti, 

Hostis  ut  evitem  spicula,  pande  viam. 
Subtrahe  me  populi  furiis,  qui  crimine  ficto 

Me  premit,  immani  spirat  et  ore  minas. 
Spem  mihi  tu  reparas,  venturae  gaudia  vitae 

Dum  recolo,  et  coeli  quae  bona  civis  habet. 
Fide  Deo,  firmaque  fidem  ;    sunt  praemia  praesto : 

Erigit  et  mentes  sustinet  ille  pias. 


APPENDIX 


Appendix  I. 

(Page  70.) 
A. — Buchanan's  Defence  in  the  Lisbon  Inquisition. 

Among  the  documents  discovered  in  1893  by  Senhor 
Henriques  in  the  Archives  of  the  Inquisition  at  Lisbon  is 
Buchanan's  Defence,  written  in  Latin.  There  were  then  found 
ninety-four  pages,  some  in  French  and  most  of  them  in 
Portuguese,  and  all  were  docquetted : — "Jorge  Buquanano 
escorses,  e  nao  vellio,"  i.e.,  "  George  Buchanan  a  Scotchman, 
and  not  old."  This  defence,  which  is  here  presented  in  modern 
spelling,  must  have  been  written  in  two  days,  and  this  in  itself 
is  evidence  of  Buchanan's  ability.  For  further  enlightenment 
on  the  trial  of  Buchanan  there  are  added  notes,  some  being 
based  on  the  information  obtained,  by  kind  permission,  from 
Senhor  G.  J.  C.  Henriques'  translations  of  the  records,  although  he 
gives  no  translation  of  the  Latin.  The  textual  errors  are  also 
here  noted  but  the  paragraphing  remains  as  copied  from  the 
Records. 

It  was  Senhor  Henriques  of  Carnota  who  first  made  known 
the  existence  of  the  whole  series  of  documents  relating  to 
Buchanan's  trial  by  the  Inquisition.  This  gentleman  has  done 
good  service  to  his  country  by  writing  the  lives  of  several  of  its 
worthies  connected  with  the  pleasant  district  in  which  he  has 
his  own  estate.  And  it  was  when  making  investigations  in 
regard  to  one  of  them  who  had  been  tried  by  the  Lisbon 
Inquisitors  that  Senhor  Henriques  came  across  the  Buchanan 
documents.  Lately,  in  connection  with  the  Buchanan  Quater- 
century  celebrations,  Senhor  Henriques  has  extended  his  investi- 
gations in  regard  to  Buchanan  among  the  Inquisition  papers 
preserved  at  Coimbra,  and  given  the  benefit  of  the  truth  he  has 
thus  elucidated  to  English  readers  in  a  quarto  volume  entitled 
George  Buchanan  in  the  Lisbon  Inquisition,  and  in  his  contribution 
to  this  Memorial  Volume. 

Saint    Bento's    Convent    within    the    city   gates,    at    Xabregas, 


382  Appendix 

which  was  destroyed  by  fire  on  the  night  of  1st  July, 
was  the  scene  of  Buchanan's  seven  months'  imprisonment  by 
decree  of  the  Inquisition,  and  part  of  this  better  known  Saint 
Bento  within  the  City  forms  that  repository  of  the  national 
archives  called  the  Torre  do  Tombo,  wherein  are  preserved  the 
records  of  the  Lisbon  Inquisition.  A  whole  room  in  this  build- 
ing, the  entrance  to  which  adjoins  that  of  the  Chamber  of 
Deputies,  is  devoted  to  these  Inquisition  papers.  They  fill  the 
phalanx  of  little  pigeon  holes  which  line  three  of  its  walls.  The 
Buchanan  papers  consist  of  forty-seven  folios  of  antique  reddish 
yellow  paper  stitched  together.  To  the  ordinary  scholar  one- 
half  of  their  contents  is  quite  unintelligible,  being  the  report  in 
the  fanciful  shorthand  of  the  time  of  the  four  several  examina- 
tions to  which  Buchanan  was  subjected  by  the  Holy  Office.  In 
the  matter  of  legibility  these  pages  contrast  forcibly  with  the 
two  Latin  statements  written  out  by  Buchanan  in  a  very  clear 
caligraphy. 

The  archival  staff,  acquainted  as  they  are  with  the  general 
character  of  these  Inquisition  documents,  expressed  great 
appreciation  of  the  courage  and  calmness  shewn  in  the 
calligraphy  and  composition  of  this  Scotch  victim's  statement, 
in  which  to  share  fully  one  needs  the  sight  of  such  another 
attempt  at  this  as  a  neighbouring  record  in  the  room  affords. 
Here  the  writer,  in  a  wild  fashion  that  makes  the  blood  creep,  ex- 
presses his  absolute  inability  in  the  circumstances  he  is  placed  in 
to  collect  his  thoughts  at  all,  or  to  remember  in  any  way  what  he 
had  said  or  done  with  a  view  to  his  defence.  In  a  shaking 
scribble  he  begs  urgently  for  mercy,  a  mercy  vainly  thus  sought, 
for  a  note  written  on  the  other  side  of  the  paper  by  the  Cardinal 
Inquisitor  himself  states  that  the  note  was  only  handed  him  by 
the  executioner  when  its  writer  was  already  at  the  stake.  It 
needs  a  tragic  touch  like  this  to  make  one  realise  the  horrors 
surrounding  our  Scotch  worthy  when  making  his  defence  in  the 
dungeon  of  the  Inquisition,  and  the  perils  which  his  coolness  and 
sagacity  so  helped  him  to  escape. 

"  Ego  Georgius  Buchananus  natione  Scotus,  diocesis 
Glasguensis,  aio  cum  anno  domini  1539  quaestio  in  Lutheranos 
decrota  esset,  mihi  timuisse  ob  has  causas.  Primum  biennium 
fere  ante  fuit  mihi  disputatio  cum  Franciscano  quodam  de  forma 
iudicii  renim  capitalium  in  Scotia  ot   praecipue  in  causa  haer- 


Appendix  383 

eseos.^  Nam  cum  e  Gallia  tum  venirem  ac  magis  Galileos  quam 
nostrorum  mores  tenerem,  mirabar  imprimis^  homines  damnari 
testibus  ignotis,  atque  etiam  interdum  hostibus,  neminem  enim 
esse  tam  innocenfcem  qui  circumveniri  possit  si  modo  inimicos, 
aut  invidos  haberet.  Recens  erafc  exemplum  ob  oculos  mercatoris 
cuiusdam,  qui  petierat  a  iudicibus  ut  certi  homines  inimici